From that point on, it was all Leafs, as they managed to score four goals against Tuukka Rask and took a commanding 4-1 lead into the final 10 minutes of the game.
That's when all hell broke loose. The Leafs, who were a hard forechecking, shot-taking machine in the first two periods, elected for a sit-back-and-wait approach, often electing to play a 1-4 neutral-zone trap.
What the Bruins did was simple. They dumped and chased against a very young and inexperienced Leafs defence. The Bruins seemed to come in waves, and the pressure was too much. Patrice Bergeron would tie the game as Zdeno Chara picked himself up out of the crease just as the puck passed by James Reimer.
After a wonderful stop by Rask on Joffrey Lupul not once, but twice, the Bruins gained all the momentum they needed.
The Bruins would continue their onslaught as they peppered Reimer with shots from all angles. One shot by Tyler Seguin ricocheted off of Reimer and onto Jake Gardiner's stick, but he handed it to Bergeron for the game-winning goal in overtime.
The Leafs can hold their heads somewhat high, as they took their regular-season nemesis, the Boston Bruins, right to the brink. They showed everyone they can beat them but still haven't proven they can beat them in the playoffs, sadly.
Here's a look back at my five keys to victory, which obviously didn't happen in this playoff series.
With a power-play percentage of 24 and a penalty-kill percentage of 85, the Leafs finished the playoffs sitting in sixth in both categories. Not great, but not awful by any means.
The Leafs easily won this matchup despite not having the so-called playoff experience. The Leafs managed to not take as many penalties as in the regular season, which helped their playoff chances as they took the Bruins to Game 7 in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.
Toronto 1, Boston 0
The story of the series was the Bruins' constant matching up of Zdeno Chara against Phil Kessel. Kessel ended up waking up against his former team, and emerging star defenceman Cody Franson led the entire NHL in first-round playoff scoring by a defenceman. James Van Riemsdyk also led the Leafs in scoring with seven points in seven games.
Sadly, though, the Leafs' secondary scoring outside of Franson was nearly nonexistent. Mikhail Grabovski was likely the Leafs' best center but couldn't buy a goal. Nikolai Kulemin failed to find the net. Clarke MacArthur only tallied twice. Dion Phaneuf scored on a lucky tip, and Jake Gardiner scored the other goal for the Leafs outside of Joffrey Lupul, Phil Kessel and James Van Riemsdyk.
The Bruins didn't get the secondary scoring either, really, as one line dominated the series. Milan Lucic was a beast, David Krejci led the entire NHL in scoring and Nathan Horton was a thorn in the Leafs side.
The Bruins' secondary scoring eventually helped guide them past the Leafs, though, as Patrice Bergeron wielded the dagger into the hearts of Leafs Nation as he not only scored the game-tying goal, but seven minutes later, he also scored the series-clinching goal for the Bruins.
Bruins take this one.
Toronto 1, Bruins 1
In other words, I felt like the battle of the goaltenders wasn't a big issue. In the end, it ended up meaning everything.
Reimer was stunning in Games 5 and 6 and easily won the Leafs at least two of the games in the series.
But when the going got tough and the pressure was on, Reimer's rebound control got the best of him. His ability to also play at the top of the crease came into question, as he was beaten by a Bergeron point shot to tie the game.
Reimer is not the reason the Leafs lost this series by any means, though. Reimer did show up, and he performed beyond expectations. However, he did not win the goaltending matchup.
Bruins 2, Toronto 1
This series clearly showed Leafs brass one of the major areas of concern for the Leafs: a lack of a top-six center who can win draws.
Tyler Bozak is decent at draws, but he was playing injured all series, and his faceoffs suffered. $5.6 million man Mikhail Grabovski not only couldn't pot a goal, but he also couldn't win a faceoff, either.
Youngsters Nazem Kadri and Joe Colborne looked overmatched in the faceoff circle, as they went a combined 2-of-18 in Game 7.
Meanwhile, Patrice Bergeron scored the game-tying and game-winning goals. He carried the Bruins on his back with 16 faceoff wins out of 22 chances, and the secondary Bruins centers also delivered in Game 7, and all series, for that matter.
David Krejci went 9-of-14, Rich Peverley went 7-of-9 and Chris Kelly went 6-of-7 in the faceoff circle, as the Bruins' ability to control the puck from the beginning proved to be too much for the Leafs.
Bruins 3, Toronto 1
Well, that was a failure in grand fashion.
If I had to guess, out of every goal the Bruins scored, I'd say 85 percent of them were scored because of either a turnover in the neutral zone or in the Leafs' own end.
The Leafs played most of the series very sloppy in their own end. Any amount of pressure on the Leafs defence led to screw-ups and turnovers. Sloppy passes and icings also plagued the Leafs defence.
Not to pick on the defence, but the forwards were also guilty of sloppy play and a real inability to clear the zone given the opportunity.
The Leafs were hesitant in clearing the zone quickly, mainly because they couldn't win a faceoff if there was an icing.
But even worse, the turnovers they made were not only bad, but they also often led to point-blank scoring chances. Most of the time, the Bruins capitalized.
Bruins 4, Toronto 1
Pretty easy to see the problems plaguing the Leafs.
The Leafs need another veteran defender or two who can make plays under pressure. Dan Hamhuis is a name that comes to mind as a defenceman who would fit like a glove with the Leafs. Not saying they'd trade for him, but he's the type of defenceman the Leafs so desperately need to stabilize the backend.
The need for a veteran goalie to help mentor James Reimer might also be in order, as Reimer looked a bit shell-shocked after the Bruins made the game 4-2.
Lastly, the need for a top-six center who can win draws is a desperate need for the Leafs. Nazem Kadri, Mikahil Grabovski and now free agent Tyler Bozak are not the answers for this team going forward.
Bozak is an answer for a second-line center, and Kadri is an answer if you want him to do anything other than win a faceoff.
Its a sad day in Leafland, but in the grand scheme of things, this should be the start of what hopefully will be a long run of playoff appearances for a franchise that's definitely on the rise in the NHL.