Boston’s Talent Lost in Transit

Bruins Hanging Out

Is that the end of the season I see?

Hey, Boston Bruins, welcome to the second round. I know it’s been a long time since you’ve been here, but stop hitting on the chick checking coats and take advantage of the opportunity inside. This is two games in a row you’ve admired a 5-game winning streak and have played around wearing Jills instead of Jocks since then. Well here are the facts: this Carolina team is no joke, and you’re now 2 losses away from making a summer-long tee time. While that may be fine for you guys, I’d like to postpone my hacking abilities at Leo J. Martin for as long as possible. Everything about tonight’s game was ugly. From the power play(0-9 so far this series), to the defensive zone break downs to the lack of physical play;  the entire performance was god-awful.

The first period started out strong, and Boston looked like they may have righted the ship after Sunday night’s 2-0 loss (empty net goals don’t count- ask Al Iafrate) in Game 2. Milan Lucic started off the scoring by pocketing his first goal of the series after a few quick passes from Wideman and Savard. After Lucic’s goal Carolina and Boston traded penalties with nothing happening on the advantages. However, this is when Boston seemed to start falling apart. The first period did not end strong and Boston started coughing up the puck and forcing it up the boards.

The second period is when the wheels really fell off. Ryder took a 2 minute interference penalty which actually ended up being a 3 1/2 minute power play when the Bruins were not able to gain control of the puck on the delayed penalty. Eric Stall ended up converting on the power play for his second goal of the series. This goal rests solely on the shoulders of Steve ‘feet for hands’ Montador who fanned on a clearing attempt while standing right next to Timmy T’s net. This would be the story of the Bruins for the rest of the night, missed attempts and an inability to handle the puck. Hey Montador, it’s fundamental hockey to gain control and then fire. I realize you were under pressure, but to fan on the attempt ended up being a tape-to-tape pass to Eric ‘I already have 6 goals in the playoffs and I am about to make it 7’ Staal. On a brighter not for the Bruins, that was the first PP goal the Bruins have let up so far in the postseason. They lead all active playoff teams with a 92.3% penalty kill rate. That is about the only plus that I squeeze in here about the Bruins because 1:09 later Phil ‘Southie Chicks Are Classy’ Kessel blew a tire skating through the neutral zone leading to a 3-2 for the Hurricanes. Ex-bruin Sergei Samsonov converted on the 3-2 and scored his first goal in a decade. Carolina doubled-up Boston on second period shots, which would have been something the Bruins could have over-come when Wallin took a nasty boarding penalty on Yelle with :39 left in the second. During the ensuing powerplay Marc Savard took the most ridiculous goaltender interference penalty hat I have ever seen, nullifying the B’s PP attempt. A play like this shows a total lack of focus and dedication to the team. Not only does this equalize the powerplay, it gets Carolina off the hook in terms of momentum swinging Boston’s way in the beginning of the third. Then Savard had the balls to start complaining to the ref, acting like Cam Ward was the one who steamrolled him from behind. Weak sauce Savard.

On to the third period….what a shitshow. It seemed as though Boston completely lost all concept of fundamental hockey. Carolina had a great forecheck going against the Bruins D which forced them to either throw the puck up the middle or try and force the play up the boards.  There were more wrap around attempts by the Buins than a JV game at Hockey Town. Communication was lacking on all sides for the Bruins, which was proven by the B’s defensemen going D to D when they should have looked for the wing, and looking for the outlet pass when they should have regrouped and gone D to D. The forwards were just as bad  trying to make moves at the blue-line and not getting the puck deep in Carolina’s zone. How many times did Krejci cough the puck up to Carolina? And as for Kessel, the inside-out move is not going to work every time, go get some game tape of Alex Ovechkin and look at how he handles one-on-ones. AO takes a quick shot through the defenseman’s leg which provides a screen and surprises the goalies.  And if this doesn’t work, get the pick deep and cycle the shit out of it. Why is the Thorton-Yelle-Axelsson line doing so well? They get the puck deep and grind in the corners. Clearly it’s fundamental hockey that’s going to win this series.

The Bruins showed some life towards the middle of the third when Recchi netted his first jingle of the post season on a tip from Kobasew. After tying the game up the B’s went right back into turtle-mode and limped into OT after getting pummeled 11-4 in shots in the third period.

As for OT, the Bruins had their chances. Savard had 2 shots blocked, Lucic made a nice play on a break away and Krejci had a great opportunity which he passed away for a fast break the other way.  I have to give Chara the blame on the OT goal by Carolina. At least 3 times tonight Chara was turned around by Carolina forwards, not really looking like a Norris Trophy Candidate.  Chara’s poke check attempt looked more like he should be trying out for Dancing With The Stars than manning the B’s blueline. His missed poke-check allowed Samsonov to throw the puck at the net and Jokinen too burry the rebound. Not to mention he had the opportunity to clear the zone, but decided to force it up the boards. That attempt is what led to Jokinen putting the game away (OT goal below):

So, where are we now? The Bruins are down 2-1 in the series, which is not insurmountable. The Bruins certainly can put together another winning streak, but they have to split the series in Carolina on Friday night. If they lose on Friday, I don’t know if the Bruins will be able to turn it around. However you cannot get outshot 41-23 when 19 shots taken by the defensmen were either blocked or missed the net, come on! Even if 1/3 of those shots get through it’s a different game. Speaking of defensemen, Ference is out with an undisclosed injury, again. I also don’t like the Chara/Ward combo. Ward looked really shaky tonight, and being paired with Chara does not help. Get Chara back with Wideman and have Ward or Stuart play with Ference, if he comes back.

A few other things that irked me about this game:

  • Stop talking about the RBC Center being the loudest in the league. Yes, Carolina has faithful fans, they get a lot of practice with NASCAR. But don’t tell me that it affects the Bruins after they went into Montreal and took 2 games from the Canadiens
  • What’s up with Kathryn Tappenconstantly looking to her left at Barry Pederson? You won’t notice this unless you watch the NESN telecast, but it really bothers me. She’s put on the air for her looks, and you cannot even see her. Does anyone else notice this? If not, you will now
  • Why can’t the B’s ice girls look like Carolinas?

That’s all for now, Boston needs to come out like a team possessed on Friday night. If you think the RBC Center was loud, wait until 17,000 ridgerunning hilljackers don’t have to get back to the tobacco fields for 48 hours, and have a litre of moonshine in them. I’m hoping for a better outing and a solid effort that the Bruins would put out in the regular season. Clearly Boston has it in them, they proved that the first 5 games of the playoffs.

EXTRA: Highlights of the game

6 Responses to “Boston’s Talent Lost in Transit”

  1. 1 commissionerdangle
    May 7, 2009 at 10:45 AM

    Absolutely terrible game. I am not as worried about this team breaking down and checking out for the season after two losses. I think they have a lot of character and great leadership. Chara, Ward, Yelle and Recchi will all step up and show the younger guys how to handle this situation.

    Claud Julien’s interview after the game showed how great of a coach he is. He spoke about how bad the game was in a matter of fact manner and then went on to say that they are going to turn the page and focus on what they can do better for tomorrow. No panicking, no calling out players. Just a focused mentality on the next game with a very short term memory-always important for any athlete.

  2. 2 patverbeek
    May 7, 2009 at 10:58 AM

    I am pretty sure I went into Cardiac Arrest in about the second period and today I can’t eat because I am so sick from last night’s game. I am not going to get into it, I think the KIIID sumed it up well, but my biggest complaint / dissapointment was the lack of physical play. After every whistle in the Montreal series there was a scrum of some sort and lots of face washing. This series looks like a bunch of hugging and hand shakes after whistles. I have said it all season long, the Bruins are at there best when they are smashing and crashing, getting in peoples faces, digging in the corners, etc… They need to get back to that old time hockey mentality, other wise as the kiiid says, there in for a summer long tee time at Leo J.


  3. May 7, 2009 at 11:12 AM

    Amen, I think these last 2 games are the worst games i’ve seen out of chara all year. He looked like a squirrel caught in traffic on that game winner. Julien was about to have an aneurism (dont worry antropov, its spelled correctly) on the bench last night, and rightfully so.

    FUCK!! is right

  4. 4 LPsnipa6
    May 7, 2009 at 11:35 AM

    It will be interesting to see how they respond to adversity. That’s when you know you are a true team. I agree though the leaders have to step up and show the young guys the way and I think they will. Barry Pederson who was with Tappin last night was talking about how he thought the depth of Boston’s team was going to put them over the top in the playoffs. But he said he has not seen it in this series and in fact Carolina looks like the deeper team. I agree they need to have all four lines show up for a game like last series. Carolina is playing really well something has to be said for that. This fuck Jokinen had 7 goals in 70 something games in the reg season and has 5 in playoffs already.

  5. May 7, 2009 at 11:37 AM

    After reading this post there is not much else to say, the kiiid you’ve pretty much summed it up very well. However, as mentioned in the post, the Bruins need to get into a “flow” in game 4. They need to get pucks deep in the corner and start coming out of their zone as 1 unit. I don’t know how many times I counted a winger at the blue line on a breakout or the center not curling towards the boards to be a support outlet. This is fundamental hockey and what the Bruins need to get into. I’m confident that they will put together a much better showing then the past two games in game 4.

    Something that wasn’t mentioned in the post……….why the fuck hasn’t Lucic dropped the mits yet? I know he’s valuable on the ice because of his abilities but fuck, when your team is down in the playoffs and you need to put some fire in them, do your job as one of the best fighters in the league and challenge Ruutu to a bout!!

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