Easy! The Boston Bruins are always making things easy for themselves. Right? They roll to a three to one series lead over the Toronto Maple Leafs and we all know that its ova!
Nah, we are oh so much smarter than that. Or are we? Friday night at the TD Garden, there was an air of invincibility going into the building. The fans had that smug we know the Leafs are done attitude and for the most part sat there and waited for the Bruins to dispatch Toronto and go home for the weekend and get ready for the next victim. Ha! Instead, the Leafs came out in a phenomonal first period, put 19 shots on Tuukka Rask and came away with a hard fought 2-1 win.
Sunday back at the ACC in Toronto, thriving off their win and those fans, the Bruins again spotted Toronto a 2-goal lead before breaking James Reimer’s shutout with 26 seconds left in the game.
And now for the eighth time in the Bruins last eleven playoff series, there will be a winner take all seventh game. No one is sure why the team seems to always be here but thye are there, we are there and its just not fun anymore…well maybe it is but its not funny!
History, even recent history will show that game sevens have not been good for the hockey club. Yes they played three seven-game series during that marvelous year of 2011, winning them all. One in overtime and all three were one-goal games. But there was last seasons loss to the Capitals. They also lost game seven to Carolina, Montreal and that fabulous meltdown in 2010 to the Philadelphia Flyers even after leading 3-0 in the first period.
Lots of questions hang over the Bruins heads before tonights game. Will they be able to score? Who will score as it seems only the Krejci-Lucic-Horton line has done most of the damage in the series, what little damamge the team has done. Will Claude Julien mix up the lines should they be as stagnant as they’ve been?
One question that really has been answered and no matter what, Tuukka Rask has done everything asked of him. How many times can you ask your goaltender to pitch a shut out because you cannot score. If it weren’t for Rask, this series would’ve been long over.
Final question is my own and my answer is NO. I have no confidence that the Boston Bruins will come to play and take control early and often of this game. They have shown most of the year that they do not play back to back games with the intensity that is need to win consistently in the playoffs. They have shown that they will not crash the net to make the goaltenders life more miserable. They have shown a propensity to not shoot when the opportunity is there instead they try cutesy passes which have lead to odd man rushes.
So, will they make things easy for us and the team tonight or will we have to go through the madness of a lucky bounce here or there one way or another.
I hope I’m wrong, and I don’t usually predict, but I think this not going the right way tonight!