The Stanley Cup Finals made its first appearance of the series in Boston. It seems like it was just yesterday the Bruins were taking on Vancouver in the Cup Finals. This series has a much different feel to it than two years ago.
After the most memorable two games to start a Cup Finals, the Bruins took to the ice to try and grab the lead in the series and put a better control on their destiny.
Daniel Paille, the game two hero, picked up where he left off starting the scoring 2:15 into the second period.
Boston put home a second goal on the power play later in the period, when Jagr lazered a pass across the ice to a wide open Bergeron on the back door.
Tuukka Rask was phenomenal as he has been all postseason. Rask stopped all 28 shots the Blackhawks put on net. Rask has not given up a goal since 11:22 of the first period in game two.
June 17, aka 6-17, aka BOSTON. LET FUCKING GO B’S…Series Back in Boston Lets do this.
They high intensity Bruins from game one showed up again in game three as the made a statement to the Leafs in front of their fans who have been waiting nine years for this moment. The B’s silenced a raucous Air Canada Centre with a 5-2 win and taking back the lead in the series two games to one.
The Bruins registered 38 shots on goal but more impressive were the 52 hits laid on Maple Leafs players. The Leafs countered with 48 hits of their own. It was game three, there are no more secrets in a series anymore. If you don’t like a player it will be known in the corners or after a whistle when sticks and gloves come up.
Adam McQuaid (1) scored his first career playoff goal in the first period on a shot from the point, which looked like it was deflected off Dion Phaneuf’s stick and changed directions on Reimer.
The B’s took a 1-0 lead into the second period. Jagr stole the puck behind the Leafs net and fed plexiglass Peverley (1) in the slot and surprisingly he beat Riemer high short side. After the Leafs scored on a PP and got the crowd back into the game, the B’s ended the frame with two more goals. Nathan Horton (3) stuck the puck, literally stuck the puck, in the top of the net and after the confusion the ref pointed to the back of the net for a goal. Dan Paille (1) netted a shorty before the end of the period.
After Phil Kessel goal early in the third, the B’s iced the game with an empty netter.
Rask set a personal and career playoff best with 45 saves on the outing.
We head north of the border for game three between the B’s and Leafs.
Big BIG tilt for the B’s tonight. Game 3 in a tied series is more important than one would think. Sure, the series can’t be won or lost tonight, but it can be at the same time.
The Bruins win — If they win and take a 2-1 series lead, they can carry momentum into game four, potentially winning that and returning home to the Garden with a chance to wrap up the series in five games. Even if the B’s lose game 4 or 5, the worst case scenario is the series goes the distance and the B’s get game 7 in Boston.
The Bruins lose — Sure if the Bruins lose and are down 2-1, the series could still go the distance and the B’s still get to play at home. But lets take a look back. Last year the B’s won games 1 and 3 but then dropped the next two and had to play from behind and force a game seven where they lost in OT. In 2009, the B’s won their first game of the Conference Semi-finals and then dropped the next three to Carolina. They played from behind tied the series and lost a heart breaker in OT in game 7 at the Garden.
The B’s need to play determined and motivated. Its a business trip, spend the three days in Toronto get your shit done and get out with two wins…at the very worst a split. But also, don’t leave there letting Toronto think they are still in the series. Even if you split let the game you lose be on a fluke goal, which they (Toronto) knows they didn’t deserve to win that game.
And on that note..
The Bruins rolled into MSG Wednesday night having not lost on the young season and were set for another playoff-like game against the Rangers. This time the cards didn’t fall in the Bruins favor as a Marian Gaborik hat-trick led the Rangers to a 4-3 overtime win.
Gaborik stole the show in the first period, scoring two goals 2:13 apart which was the only scoring in the opening frame between the two teams. However towards the end of the period things got chippy when Adam McQuaid took acception to a late Brian Boyle shot after a whistle and settled the issue how men tend to do in the NHL.
The Mcquaid fight seemed to re-energize the flat Bruins between periods as the B’s came out flying in the second period. Marchand (2) scored the teams first power-play goal of the year 1:05 into the second when he tipped in a Dougie Hamilton shot from the point.
Just past the mid-way point of the period Lucic (2) tied the game for the B’s 2-2. The tie only stood for :46 second until Taylor Pyatt gave the Rangers the lead again.
Boston continued to battle in the third and while cycling the puck deep in the Rangers zone, the puck was chipped out to the point where an unattended to Nathan Horton (1), just off the bench, ripped a slapper beating Lundqvist between the wickets.
The game moved to overtime and was thrilling for the :27 seconds it lasted. A pass attempt to Ference at the blue line was bobbled and Marian Gaborik broke between the two Bruins defenders, springing himself on a breakaway. Rask made the initial save but Gaborik batted the rebound from mid-air past Rask securing the hat-trick and the win for New York.
B’s hit the ice again Friday night at home against the Islanders.
Its funny how sports work. Last post-season the Bruins scored 1 goal in their first two games against Montreal before winning both games in Montreal to even the series. Their first win in Montreal was by a score of 4-2.
Well the B’s netted 2 goals this season in a split in Boston. Then defeated Washington 4-3 in the nations capital to take the series lead 2 games to 1.
The Bruins also claimed the intensity of the series. Both teams had been struggling to find their offensive momentum and the Bruins had seem to be playing the Caps style of play, because as we all know the Bruins like playing a physical style of hockey.
The Caps got on the board first with a goal from Alexander Semin with 4:00 left in the first period.
It didn’t take the Bruins long to answer when the second period started, as Rich Peverley (1) scored just 0:35 into the second frame. But in good ol’ Bruins fahsion they let Ovechkin walk down the right wing and rip a shot that beat Tim Thomas to put the Caps back on top, 15 seconds after the Peverley goal.
The B’s evened the score before the end of the period on a Daniel Paille (1) goal as he had the space in front of the net to make a move to the backhand to beat Holtby.
We move to the third where things got interesting.
Brian Rolston (1) scored 1:02 into the period giving the Bruins a 3-2 lead. The Caps tied the game when Brooks Liach was sent on a breakaway and beat Thomas, tying the game 3-3. Zdeno Chara (1) put the Bruins on top for good with 1:53 left to play in the game.
The Bruins have yet to get a point from any member of their top two offensive lines.
Now, I’ve added the extended highlights below but pointed out the times in which key fights happen during the game.
-2:30: Scrum at the end of the first period
-5:35: Lucic and Chimera get matching penalties for tussling before face-off
-7:52: Scrum/Chimera stick Marchand in crotch
-9:15: Chara high-sticked by Hendricks
-11:15: Backstrom get’s his THIRD cross-checking penalty of the game
Now the fun really begins
-12:10: Scrum after whistle, Alzner calls Lucic a cry baby (naturally Jack Edwards goes nuts)
-18:05: Scrum at the end of the game and Backstrom’s FOURTH cross-checking penalty
Game four on Thursday should be interesting.
With the series tied 1-1 and shifting to Washington it should get interesting. Both teams are in search of offense as there has been a total of 4 goals scored in the series.
Tim Thomas will get an earful being in D.C. after his boycotting of the White House in January. I’m sure the fans will be harassing him and trying to take him off his game.
It was this time last year in the playoffs when the B’s identity was born. A trip to Montreal down 2-0 in the series, they took both games on the road and rolled from that point.
NESN has the line-ups:
Projected Bruins lines
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Rich Peverley
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Tyler Seguin
Benoit Pouliot-Chris Kelly-Brian Rolston
Daniel Paille-Gregory Campbell-Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara-Dennis Seidenberg
Andrew Ference-Johnny Boychuk
Greg Zanon-Joe Corvo
Scratches: Adam McQuaid (upper body), Nathan Horton (concussion), Tuukka Rask (groin), Mike Mottau, Jordan Caron
Projected Capitals lines
Alex Ovechkin-Brooks Laich-Troy Brouwer
Marcus Johansson-Nicklas Backstrom-Alexander Semin
Jason Chimera-Jay Beagle-Mathieu Perrault
Keith Aucoin-Matt Hendricks-Joel Ward
Karl Alzner-John Carlson
Roman Hamrlik-Mike Green
Jeff Schultz-Dennis Wideman
Scratches: John Erskine, Jeff Halpern, Mike Knuble, Cody Eakin, Dmitry Orlov, Tomas Vokoun (groin), Michal Neuvirth (leg)
So its now official to say the Bruins have stumbled out of the gate to start the season. Through four games the B’s have only scored seven goals and have gone a thrilling 1 for 18 on the power play.
The worst part of watching the Bruins over the three games they have lost is, although they have not played great, they still have a chance to win all the games. If it weren’t for the final minute of the first period against the Flyers they would have had control of the game. Symeon Varlamov stood on his head so Colorado could get their first win of the season against the B’s. Then there was last night.
The B’s had two opportunities in the first period to score on the PP, naturally they didn’t. A late penalty on Chris Kelly at the end of the first period, carried over into the second, which Joni Pitkanen scored just :42 seconds into the second period.
The B’s hung around during the second, blowing three more PP opportunities and headed into the third period trailing 1-0.
Boston went down 2-0 almost four minutes into the third but Tyler Seguin (1) answered back for the B’s, with an absolute snipe just :25 seconds after the Hurricanes goal, making it a 2-1 game. Seguin played really well and had good puck movement on the first line, which was probably the best game the first line has played all season.
The B’s gave up another goal in the ladder half of the period when Jiri Tlusty was just left, wideee open in front of the net. Boston answered back again (on their only PP that works, the 6 on 5 PP) when Machmond (2) scored on a delayed penalty and they had the extra attacker on the ice.
The B’s could have won but they did not put a full 60-minute effort and did not get a complete game from everyone on the team. Right now the win over Tampa is the way the B’s need to play to win games this season.
Their other problem is, the Bruins are a team that plays better with their backs to the wall. Just look at last year in the playoffs, the team strived when down 2-0 to Montreal, down 2-0 to Vancouver, and other desperate times throughout the playoffs, where they absolutely needed to win.
B’s have a BIG BIG game on Saturday, when they head to Chicago for a match-up of the last two Stanley Cup winners.
Matinee games always have a different feel to them, it is hard to get into the flow of the game because players are so used to being in a routine and when the routine is altered, especially on game day it makes it hard to adjust.
The Bruins seemed flat all game long against the Colorado Avalanche during Monday’s, Columbus Day, matinee game.
Part of the reason could be because the Bruins were hungover (legitimately) from attending the Patriots v. Jets game at Gillette Stadium on Sunday afternoon. I know it took me a few hours to shake off the cob-webs after going to the game yesterday. Not to mention it was the Bruins last parade with the Stanley Cup before it went back to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
The Avalanche came into the game going 5-0-1 in their last six trips to TD Garden.
Tuukka kept the B’s in the game through two periods, making some crucial saves during the first two periods, helping the Bruins offense who had a lack luster effort heading into the third period, still in a scoreless game.
The B’s came out of the gate firing in the first few minutes of the third period, finally looking like they had their heads in the game and creating scoring opportunities.
The slow play of the Bruins finally caught up with them with 12:03 remaining in the third period. Colorado won an offensive zone draw back to the point, the puck was sent down to the half-wall where Milan Hejduk took the puck and fired a shot on goal. The shot had eyes as it beat Tuukka five-hole giving the Av’s a 1-0 lead.
For as well as Tuukka played to keep the Bruins in the game, Semyon Varlamov played equally as well, if not better, to allow the Av’s a chance to win the game. Off the top of my head I can think of at least three or four point blank saves Varlamov made throughout the course of the game, stopping all 36 shots he faced.
It only took the one goal for the Avalanche to get their first win of the season and take down the defending cup champions.
The Bruins will play their first road game, Wednesday night in Carolina.
After a total cheap shot on a play when Nathan Horton didn’t have the puck and got blind-sided by Aaron Rome it began a rally cry for the Bruins. The best thing that could have happened to Rome was that he was tossed from the game because Shawn Thornton might have killed him.
I was waiting for this move from Shawn Thornton after Horton was taken off the ice on a stretcher…As Thornton stared down the Vancouver bench
The Bruins, rallied and played a complete game after Horton was taken off the ice. Goals from Ference (3), Recchi (4), Marchand (7), Krejci (11), Paille (3), Recchi (5), Kelly (5), and Ryder (6) earned the Bruins an 8-1, game three victory over the Canucks.
This game had everything, game misconducts, fights, Tim Thomas throwing checks, every Bruins player trying to get the Cauncks to bite their fingers.
It was the Big Bad Bruins all night long, and they scared the bejesus out of Vancouver.
Also, like I said from the beginning. If you light-up Luongo one time you get in his head. Well what do you think is going through his head after he gave up and eight spot in the Cup finals. To makes matters worse, the final three goals game on three consecutive shots.
If you thought game three was exciting, well just wait till game four. The water is boiling and about to spill over the top of the pot, lets just wait and see what happenes Wednesday night. Lets see if the B’s can keep the momentum or if this was just a one night stand.