BOSTON – Michael Ryder scored to beat the Montreal Canadiens in the first two minutes of overtime of Game 4. Nathan Horton needed two OTs to end it three nights later, then added another sudden-death goal in Game 7 to help the Boston Bruins eliminate the Canadiens.

When David Krejci beat Philadelphia after 14 minutes of overtime in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Monday night, Boston improved to 4-0 in overtime this postseason.

The Bruins say the key is remaining aggressive, but having Tim Thomas, the Vezina Trophy finalist, behind them in net also doesn’t hurt.

“In overtime there’s no doubt, you’ve got to tell your players to play to win,” Coach Claude Julien said Tuesday, a day after Krejci’s goal gave Boston a 3-2 victory and a 2-0 lead in the series. “Don’t sit back. But the main thing is about trying to make sure you minimize those mistakes that can be costly because it doesn’t take much.”

Philadelphia made the mistake Monday night, failing to clear the puck out and allowing Horton to get to it on the boards. He passed it to Krejci, who one-timed it past goalie Brian Boucher off the back of the net; the referee initially waved it off and it wasn’t until a whistle for icing about a minute later that a review showed it was a goal.

“It’s a bit of a crapshoot when you go into overtime. At that point in the game both teams are in the same boat,” defenseman Andrew Ference said. “I’d be lying if I didn’t say it’s a bit of luck.”

But it’s more than luck that have the Bruins sitting on a two-game lead over the Flyers, with a chance to close out the series at home in Games 3 and 4 tonight and Friday. Of course, it was only a year ago that Philadelphia lost the first three games of the conference semifinals before coming back to beat the Bruins in Game 7.

Flyers center Claude Giroux said the team would like to avoid being in that position again.

“Coming back from 0-3 — I think it’s pretty hard, even if we did it last year,” he said. “We don’t want to put ourselves in that situation. With the game we played (Monday) night, I think that we have to keep that same mind-set and stay aggressive.”

The Flyers pelted Thomas with 54 shots, outshooting Boston 32-12 in the third period and overtime. But he stopped 46 consecutive shots and a career-high 52 in all.

“He kept us in it,” defenseman Tomas Kaberle said. “If it hadn’t been for him, I don’t know what would be the end.”

Neither team had a full practice Tuesday. Both gathered for a team meeting and off-ice workouts.

Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger, who missed Game 2 with an undisclosed injury, wasn’t on the ice, but the leading regular-season scorer, Jeff Carter, skated briefly on his own. Boucher, who left Monday night’s game for 10 minutes in the second period but returned in the third, said his hand wasn’t swollen where it was hit by a puck.

GM Paul Holmgren said all of the players were day-to-day.

Julien said defenseman Adam McQuaid, who crashed head first into the boards in Game 2, had a sprained neck and was a day-to-day decision. Steven Kampfer, a potential fill-in, has been out three weeks with an injured knee; he resumed skating for the first time Tuesday, but Julien said he would be out “a while.”