Marc Bureau and Mike Modano sparked Minnesota's five-goal outburst by scoring 18 seconds apart in the first period Wednesday night as the North Stars moved within one win of their first Stanley Cup final appearance since 1981 with a 5-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.
For the Oilers to continue defending their title, they must become the ninth team in NHL history to rebound from a 3-1 deficit.The last team to rally from a 3-1 deficit was St. Louis against Detroit earlier this year. The Oilers did it against Winnipeg in last season's opening round en route to their fifth Stanley Cup in seven years.
Minnesota, 19-2-2 at Met Center since Jan. 17, has outscored opponents 34-13 in winning seven straight home playoff games. The North Stars are 4-0 against Edmonton this season at Met Center and have outscored the Oilers 22-6, including 12-4 in two postseason games.
The North Stars, the NHL's 16th-best team during the regular season, are looking for their third straight upset.
Swept in the 1984 semifinals in their only previous playoff meeting with Edmonton, the Stars gained home-ice advantage in this series by winning Game 1, only their second victory ever at Northlands Coliseum.
With 6:53 left in the first period, Bureau, who was a member of the Salt Lake Golden Eagles earlier in the season, completed a 2-on-1 break by scoring his first NHL goal to tie the game at 1-1 with a shot under goalie Grant Fuhr's arm. Marouelli, thinking the puck hit the crossbar, disallowed it. But the linesmen again intervened and again were correct - ruling that the puck hit the inside of the top of the net.
On the ensuing faceoff, the North Stars raced into Edmonton's zone and Esa Tikkanen was checked off the puck by Modano. Brian Propp passed to Chris Dahlquist, whose shot from the point hit the post. Modano put the rebound past an out-of-position Fuhr.