The Boston Bruins came out flying tonight scoring two goals in the first period en route to a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens. They are now down two games to one with Game 4 coming Thursday from the Bell Center.
I have criticized the Bruins extensively over the past two weeks because I felt they did not up their intensity for the playoffs. Tonight, the finally showed the intensity and energy that I was questioning. After a too many men in the ice penalty one minute into the game that had me using every piece of vocabulary I know, David Krejci found the twine putting the Bruins up 1-0 for their first lead of the series. Eleven minutes later there was a Nathan Horton sighting as he flipped the puck off the back of Carey Price and past the goal line giving the Bruins a 2-0 lead going into the first intermission.
The Bruins really showed me their grit and toughness tonight. It was best exemplified by Andrew Ferrence right at the end of the first period. Benoit Pouliot went for a cheap head hunting hit on Johnny Boychuck and Ferrence dropped the gloves and went right after Pouliot. Ferrence gives up 4 maybe 5 inches but he was backing up his teammate.
Rich Peverly tallied a goal two minutes into the 2nd period on a miscue from Carey Price, much to the delight of Jack Edwards. Edwards exclaimed, “The Bruins go up three nothing on a goal by Peverly…Isn’t that Rich?” Edwards is so quirky that I love it. From that point on the Bruins were Patriot-esque with a bend but don’t break defense. Tim Thomas let 2 goals in through the five hole that should have been saved.
What Thomas did though to make up for those transgressions was stand on his head the last eight minutes of the game. Thomas was diving all over the ice making ridiculous saves that make me wonder why he makes the tough shots look easy and lets the easy shots in for goals. I digress.
Tonight the Bruins played with intensity, energy, and showed they do belong. I was glad to see David Krejci and Nathan Horton finally show up. I was glad to see Zdeno Chara back in the lineup. I would much rather have a dehydrated Chara on the ice than a healthy Shane Hnidy. I do wish Claude would abort his rolling of four lines at all times but this isn’t a post for me to moan and groan. The Bruins showed the heart and fire that I have been looking for. They reminded that they are in fact one of the best road teams in hockey. Best of all they silenced those pesky Habs fans.
On to Thursday for Game Four. I feel a bit more confident now than I did this morning. And that’s a good thing. And no good thing ever dies.