’73-’74 Bruins Light Up ’83-’84 Oilers for 29 Goals in Four Game Sweep to Advance to Semifinal

Phil Esposito's seven goals paced the Bruins in their four game sweep of the powerhouse Oilers.   via distantreplay.org

Phil Esposito’s seven goals paced the Bruins in their four game sweep of the powerhouse Oilers. via distantreplay.org

The 5th-seeded ’83-’84 Edmonton Oilers came into the Quarterfinal scoring a ton of goals, but allowing a ton of goals at the same time. The 4th-seeded ’73-’74 Boston Bruins offense finally was too much for Edmonton’s offense to keep up with. The Bruins stormed out of the gates with eight goals in Game 1 8-4 win, including a hat trick from Terry O’Reilly and two goals from John Bucyk. The Bruins equaled that with eight goals in an 8-1 win in Game 2, with two goals from Bobby Schmautz and Wayne Cashman. In Game 3, the Oilers put up more of a fight, holding a 3-2 lead entering the third period with two goals from Wayne Gretzky. However, Boston scored three goals in the third, including the eventual game-winner from Ken Hodge and not even a goal from Jari Kurri in the final minute of the game could propel the Oilers to tie it up. In Game 4, Boston made a statement in the first period by scoring four goals. They wrapped up the sweep with another eight goal performance and ended Game 4 by a score of 8-5.

The Bruins’ offense has been a powerhouse through the tournament and Phil Esposito was a big part of it in this sweep. He led the Bruins in goals with seven and added three assists for 10 points. Bucyk and O’Reilly were second on the team in goals in the series with four. Cashman led the Bruins in assists with nine in four games and he added two goals to total 11 points. Defenseman Carol Vadnais was right behind him with eight assists in the four games. Cashman led the Bruins in points with his 11 and Esposito and Vadnais were tied for second with their 10 points. Boston came into this series with six players in double digits in points and left the series with 10 players in double digits in points, with Hodge, O’Reilly, Schmautz and center Derek Sanderson reaching the plateau in this series. Goaltender Gilles Gilbert didn’t quite have the series that he has had in previous rounds, but he was good enough. He posted a 3.50 goals against average and a .904 save percentage in the four games.

The Oilers offense was never an issue, but there defense and goaltending had been. In this series, it was finally exploited and their powerful offense couldn’t do enough. Kurri and Gretzky led the Oilers in goals in the series with Kurri potting five and Gretzky potting three. Both finish the tournament atop Edmonton’s leaderboard in goals with Gretzky finishing with 17 goals and Kurri finishing with 12. Defenseman Paul Coffey led the Oilers in assists with five in the four games and right behind him were Gretzky and Mark Messier, who both posted four assists. Kurri and Messier finish the tournament as the Oilers’ c0-leaders in assists with both totaling 17 assists. Kurri’s eight points were also the most among Oilers and he was followed up by Gretzky, who’s seven points were second on the team in the series. Those same two both finish the tournament with 29 points, which are tied for the most on the team. Messier finished the tournament third on the team in points with 22 and Coffey finished fourth on the team in points with 21. Goaltending was an issue for the Oilers in this tournament and Grant Fuhr, once again, struggled in this round. He was pulled in three games of the series for Andy Moog. Fuhr posted a 5.00 goals against average and a .839 save percentage in the four games. He finishes the tournament with a 3.69 goals against average and a .894 save percentage.

Here are this series’ links:

Three Stars of the Series:

  1. BOS – LW – Wayne Cashman – 2 G   9 A   11 P   +11   15 S   6 Star Points
  2. BOS – C – Phil Esposito – 7 G   3 A   10 P   +5   34 S   4 Star Points
  3. BOS – RW – Terry O’Reilly – 4 G   2 A   6 P   +5   13 S   3 Star Points

GAME 1:

1st Period 2nd Period 3rd Period Overtime Total
#5 ‘83-’84 Oilers 1 2 1 4
#4 ‘73-’74 Bruins 3 2 3 8

GAME SUMMARY:   BOS – 8   EDM – 4   (1-0 BOS)

1st Period:

  • BOS Goal: D. Marcotte (2) assisted by T. O’Reilly (5), C. Vadnais (9)
  • BOS PP-Goal: P. Esposito (7) assisted J. Bucyk (4)
  • EDM Goal: G. Anderson (5) assisted by P. Coffey (11), M. Messier (14)
  • BOS Goal: T. O’Reilly (2) assisted by W. Cashman (6), C. Vadnais (10)

2nd Period:

  • BOS Goal: T. O’Reilly (3) assisted by D. Sanderson (4)
  • BOS Goal: P. Esposito (8) assisted by W. Cashman (7), C. Vadnais (11)
  • EDM Goal: J. Kurri (8) assisted by W. Gretzky (9)
  • EDM Goal: K. McClelland (2) assisted by R. Summanen (5)

3rd Period:

  • BOS Goal: J. Bucyk (9) assisted by B. Schmautz (8), D. Sanderson (5)
  • BOS Goal: T. O’Reilly (4) assisted by D. Smith (3), G. Sheppard (1)
  • BOS PP-Goal: J. Bucyk (10) assisted by K. Hodge (6)
  • EDM Goal: J. Kurri (9) assisted by W. Gretzky (10)

GAME 2:

1st Period 2nd Period 3rd Period Overtime Total
#5 ‘83-’84 Oilers 0 1 0 1
#4 ‘73-’74 Bruins 1 3 4 8

GAME SUMMARY:   BOS – 8   EDM – 1   (2-0 BOS)

1st Period:

  • BOS PP-Goal: P. Esposito (9) assisted by B. Orr (8), K. Hodge (7)

2nd Period:

  • BOS Goal: B. Orr (9) assisted by C. Vadnais (12)
  • EDM Goal: C. Huddy (7) assisted by J. Kurri (15), M. Messier (15)
  • BOS Goal: W. Cashman (6) assisted by K. Hodge (7), B. Orr (9)
  • BOS Goal: W. Cashman (7) assisted by C. Vadnais (13), C. Oddleifson (1)

3rd Period:

  • BOS Goal: J. Bucyk (11) assisted by D. Edestrand (4)
  • BOS Goal: D. Marcotte (3) assisted by D. Smith (4), G. Sheppard (2)
  • BOS PP-Goal: B. Schmautz (1) assisted by W. Cashman (8), D. Smith (5)
  • BOS Goal: B. Schmautz (2) assisted by J. Bucyk (5)

GAME 3:

1st Period 2nd Period 3rd Period Overtime Total
#4 ‘73-’74 Bruins 2 0 3 5
#5 ‘83-’84 Oilers 2 1 1 4

GAME SUMMARY:   BOS – 5   EDM – 4   (3-0 BOS)

1st Period:

  • EDM Goal: W. Gretzky (15) assisted by J. Kurri (16), P. Coffey (12)
  • BOS Goal: T. O’Reilly (5) assisted by D. Sanderson (6), W. Cashman (9)
  • BOS Goal: P. Esposito (10) assisted by C. Vadnais (14), W. Cashman (10)
  • EDM Goal: J. Kurri (10) assisted by W. Gretzky (11), M. Messier (16)

2nd Period:

  • EDM Goal: W. Gretzky (16) assisted by J. Kurri (17)

3rd Period:

  • BOS Goal: P. Esposito (11) assisted by W. Cashman (11), D. Smith (2)
  • BOS Goal: A. Sims (2) assisted by D. Sanderson (7), T. O’Reilly (6)
  • 18:42 BOS Goal: K. Hodge (3) assisted by D. Smith (3)
  • 19:04 EDM Goal: J. Kurri (11) assisted by C. Huddy (7)

GAME 4:

1st Period 2nd Period 3rd Period Overtime Total
#4 ‘73-’74 Bruins 4 2 2 8
#5 ‘83-’84 Oilers 1 2 2 5

GAME SUMMARY:   BOS – 8   EDM – 5   (4-0 BOS)

1st Period:

  • BOS Goal: P. Esposito (12) assisted by K. Hodge (9), W. Cashman (12)
  • EDM Goal: J. Kurri (12) assisted by P. Coffey (13), K. Linseman (3)
  • BOS PP-Goal: J. Bucyk (12) assisted by B. Orr (11), P. Esposito (8)
  • BOS Goal: P. Esposito (13) assisted by C. Vadnais (15), K. Hodge (10)
  • BOS Goal: B. Schmautz (3) assisted by D. Sanderson (8), J. Bucyk (6)

2nd Period:

  • EDM Goal: L. Fogolin, Jr. (3) assisted by P. Coffey (14)
  • BOS Goal: C. Vadnais (3) assisted by P. Esposito (9)
  • EDM Goal: K. McClelland (3) assisted by R. Summanen (6), P. Coffey (15)
  • BOS Goal: C. Vadnais (4) assisted by W. Cashman (13), D. Sanderson (9)

3rd Period:

  • BOS Goal: K. Hodge (4) assisted by P. Esposito (10)
  • BOS Goal: D. Sanderson (3) assisted by C. Vadnais (16), W. Cashman (13)
  • EDM Goal: W. Gretzky (17) assisted by M. Messier (17), R. Gregg (2)
  • EDM Goal: M. Messier (5) assisted by W. Gretzky (17), D. Jackson (1)

Once again, the Big Bad Bear is moving on. The 4th-seeded ’73-’74 Boston Bruins now move on to the Semifinal where they will face the winner between the top-seeded ’76-’77 Montreal Canadiens and the 9th-seeded ’71-’72 New York Rangers.

Up next in the Quarterfinal is the final matchup of the round and includes the aforementioned Canadiens and Rangers.

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