NHL Playoffs: fourth game of the series between the Hurricanes and the Bruins

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BOSTON — Brad Marchand had two goals and three assists as the Boston Bruins beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-2 on Sunday to even their 2-2 streak.

The Bruins were without their two top defenders after Charlie McAvoy was dropped from the squad at the last minute. He joined Hampus Lindholm on the sidelines.

Boston’s squad came from behind twice and Marchand broke the deadlock early in the third period to help his team earn a second straight playoff win.

Patrice Bergeron had one goal and two assists, David Pastrnak had one goal and one assist, while Jake DeBrusk threaded the needle once for the Bruins. Jeremy Swayman made 23 saves.

Brett Pesce and Jordan Staal answered for the Hurricanes. Antti Raanta made a comeback, blocking 23 pucks in the net for the Metropolitan Division champions.

Game 5 of this series takes place in North Carolina on Tuesday night. One of the two teams can advance to the next round in Boston on Thursday evening.

Pesce put the Hurricanes ahead in the sixth minute, marking the fourth straight game of the series that Rod Brind’Amour’s side had scored the first goal.

Bergeron equalized the game four minutes from time in the first period. He slipped a loose puck between Raanta’s pads.

Just 33 seconds into the second period, Nino Niederreiter backhanded the puck to Staal, who fired a pinpoint one-timer to give the Hurricanes a 2-1 lead.

The Bruins used a power play to put both teams back up first. Marchand sent the puck to Raanta and the puck stayed in the semicircle where DeBrusk pushed it into the back of the net.

Brind’Amour challenged the goal because he felt it was a goalkeeper’s handicap, but the referees upheld their decision. The Bruins got a power play with the decision and it turned into a two-man advantage when Sebastian Aho hit Bergeron in the face.

The Bruins took the lead by just a second on the two-man power play. Marchand scored with a wrist shot and Pastrnak scored the insurance goal five minutes later.

McAvoy withdrawn from practice

Prior to the game, McAvoy was dropped from the Bruins roster and placed under the National Hockey League’s COVID-19 protocol.

To replace McAvoy on the roster, the Bruins added defenseman Josh Brown, who played six games with the team after being acquired by the Ottawa Senators at the close of trade.

McAvoy, 24, was a Bruins first-round pick in the 2016 Norris Trophy, awarded to the NHL’s top defenseman in each of the past two seasons.

In 2022, he set career personal bests for goals (10) and assists (46). He led all defenders on the team in points during the season, averaging 24 minutes and 39 seconds.

Bergeron cut near the eye

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