Linus Ullmark on Monday night ventured into territory he previously never had.
Game 1 of the first-round Stanley Cup playoff series between the Bruins and the Hurricanes marked the first career postseason start for Ullmark, a seventh-year NHL pro. Ullmark was looking steady in the early goings at PNC Arena, but he and his team ultimately couldn’t get over the hump after surrendering a pair of goals late in the second period. Boston eventually fell 5-1 to Carolina, extending the Black and Gold’s losing streak against the Canes.
The Bruins’ series-opening loss certainly does not fall squarely on the shoulders of Ullmark. But after Game 1, the 28-year-old held himself accountable for not giving his team a better chance to win.
“I thought the guys did a tremendous job,” Ullmark told reporters, per the Bruins’ official website. “You know it’s gonna come down to some lucky bounces here and there and that’s hockey … at the end of the day, it’s all about stopping pucks. It doesn’t matter how you do it. I have to stop one more than (Antti Raanta) to win the game. It’s as easy as that.”
After the B’s wrapped up their regular season, there was uncertainty about who Bruce Cassidy would put in between the pipes for Boston’s playoff opener. While Ullmark was fine in Game 1, the Bruins head coach after the game was non-committal about which goaltender would get the nod for Game 2.
NESN will provide complete coverage of Wednesday night’s tilt in Raleigh beginning at 6 p.m. ET.