Zdeno Chara scored the tiebreaking goal during four-on-four play with less than 2 minutes left, and the defending Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins finally solved playoff rookie goalie Braden Holtby, beating the Washington Capitals, 4-3, Monday night to take a 2-1 lead in the first-round series.

Chara's shot from the right circle appeared to get deflected on its way past Holtby. The Bruins captain also had two assists.

Tim Thomas, last season's playoff MVP, made 29 saves and ignored the taunting from fans who held up photos of President Barack Obama, reminding Boston's goalie that he turned down a trip to the White House in January with his teammates.

Game 4 is Thursday night in Washington. After that, the best-of-seven Eastern Conference series shifts back to Boston for Game 5 on Saturday.

Brian Rolston, Rich Peverley and Daniel Paille also scored for the Bruins.

Alex Ovechkin, Alexander Semin and Brooks Laich got Washington's goals. Laich scored on a breakaway with 6 minutes left to tie it at 3, but Chara came through with 1:53 remaining for second-seeded Boston. Flyers aim for sweep

The Penguins are trying their best to beat up the Philadelphia Flyers.

Heck, even Sidney Crosby tossed aside concerns about blows to his head and mixed it up in a couple of melees.

Pittsburgh has come for a fight in its opening-round series. The Flyers have refused to back down -- note the 158 penalty minutes in Game 3 -- but the orange and black have saved their biggest beatdowns for the scoreboard.

Led by Claude Giroux and Danny Briere, the Flyers have 20 goals in the first three games, including six goals on the power play and three shorthanded. The Flyers forced Marc-Andre Fleury to the bench in their 8-4 win in Game 3 and are a Game 4 victory away from an unlikely sweep.

The Penguins will be forced to rally shorthanded Wednesday, as Craig Adams was suspended for one game yesterday for instigating a fight at 15:18 of the third period. He was assessed a minor penalty for instigating, a major for fighting and a game misconduct.

Penguins coach Dan Bylsma was also fined $10,000 for Adams' actions.

-- AP

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