Bruton fires Blaze into play-off final
Chris Bruton netted a hat-trick to lead defending champions Genting Casino Coventry Blaze into the Elite League play-off final after thrashing Cardiff Devils 6-2 at the National Ice Centre.
Blaze, bidding to become only the third team to retain the trophy, blew Devils away with a four-goal first-period burst.
Bruton got the go-ahead goal at 2.28 before Brett Robinson tipped in a Carl Lauzon pass on the powerplay at 9.54.
Cale Tanaka made it 3-0 just 10 seconds later, with Devils calling a time-out, before his precise pass fed Bruton for his second at 16.44.
Josh Godfrey extended Blaze's cushion at 28.56, following up after Devils goaltender Ben Bowns had parried his initial effort.
Bruton (52.39) got his hat-trick goal before Blaze netminder Brian Stewart saw his shut-out ended by Gleason Fournier at 58.21.
Joey Haddad notched a second for Devils with 40 seconds left but Blaze march on to Sunday's final, where they will meet Fife Flyers or Nottingham Panthers.
Head Coach, Chuck Weber said: "It was a complete effort. To be able to keep Cardiff to 23 shots was a fantastic team effort defensively. We were able to get them out of their comfort zone offensively and then we were able to capitalise in transition with some fantastic net drive and I couldn't be more proud.
"We've been playing really good hockey of late so we've had a good build-up. The boys have really bought into what we what we are trying to do structurally and now it's up to me to put a game plan together for whoever we play tomorrow."