Boston Bruins to face Vancouver Canucks for Stanley Cup

Boston Bruins
Boston players and fans celebrate their Eastern Conference victory

Boston Bruins will take on Vancouver Canucks for this year's Stanley Cup after beating Tampa Bay Lightning in their NHL Eastern Conference decider.

A final-period Nathan Horton goal gave the Bruins a 1-0 win on Friday night in Boston, and a 4-3 series victory.

The Bruins, whose last Stanley Cup success came in 1972, take on the Canucks in game one of seven in Vancouver on Wednesday.

The Canucks have never lifted the trophy in their 40-year history.

Boston left it late to claim their finals spot, Horton deflecting in David Krejci's pass with less than eight minutes of regulation time remaining on Friday.

"I couldn't have asked for a better game seven from our team," said Boston coach Claude Julien.

"We drove the net, we did what we're supposed to do. We were patient with that puck. Our guys chose at a real good time to make that pass and walk in."

The lack of scoring was in stark contrast to game six on Wednesday, when the Lightning won 5-4 to set up the series decider.

The legendary Bobby Orr led the Bruins to their last NHL title in 1972, when they beat the New York Rangers, but they lost to Edmonton Oilers in their most recent finals in 1990.

Vancouver clinched a 4-1 victory in the Western Conference finals series with a 3-2 overtime defeat of the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday.

The Canucks lost their two previous Stanley Cup series, against the New York Islanders in 1982 and New York Rangers in 1994.

However, they entered this year's play-offs as top seeds thanks to a strong regular season, during which they won an NHL-leading 54 of 82 matches.