Kessel had you all fooled by his regular season play!
Another MASSIVE collapse by the Bruins.
Just a couple of the tweets I made with about six minutes left in the third period of Monday nights game seven between the Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs. And of course, they were your thoughts as well! Down three goals after 5:29 of the third period when Nazem Kadri deposited a Phil Kessel rebound by Tuukka Rask, it was time to turn out the lights, melt the ice, and figure out which players would be on the 2013-14 roster and if the Coach would be retained. The loss would sure mean major changes to the hockey club as we know it.
But a funny thing happened on the way to the Boston Collapse. The wide-eyed playoff freshman from Toronto had a meltdown of their own. It started with a Nathan Horton goal with 11:42 left. Nice, but at the time, I called it ‘window dressing’, to try and make the score respectable. For the next nine minutes, the Bruins were pressing as they haven’t all game and for much of the past three games and still two goals short of tying the game. Meantime as they put pressure on, its the Leafs who seem to keep getting breakways and two on ones which thankfully Rask is shutting them down with regularity.
Two minutes left and Rask head to the bench as the Bruins dump and chase. The puck comes back to the Captain and Chara blast on net. Reimer saves and pokes the rebound to Milan Lucic – who in that last 10 minutes was the Lucic that we’ve been looking for all year – who promptly lifted a hard wrister over the prone goalie and now with 1:22 left, the Bruins are a goal away from tying it. Still improbable!
This will not happen. They are gonna lose game seven by one goal because of their “Jeckyll and Hyde” personality Claude Julien says they have. They are still teasing us by clawing back in it and really do not have much time to tie the game and send it to overtime.
Toronto is gonna stiffen their backbone and say ‘Screw you Bruins. You are not gonna take this away from us. Not now. Not this close.’
But the Leafs spine was weakening even more as the puck came back to Patrice Bergeron at the blue line and with the six foot eight inch Chara screening, Bergy’s shot beat Reimer on the blocker side with :50.2 seconds left and….and….We are tied?!?!?!
Remarkable! Three goals down in period three of game 7 and the Bruins have tied and the collapse is almost complete. Rich Peverley had a chance to win the game in regulation however, his shot from all alone in the slot but, ahhh, its Rich Peverley.
Overtime after what should have been a funeral for the Boston Bruins. Adrenaline pumping in the players and the fans are rocking the TD Garden.
A few innocuous scoring plays for both teams before Bergeron brings the puck in the attacking zone. Toronto players allow him to bring around behind the to Tyler Seguin who immdiately puts a shot on net. One rebound, a shot by Begeron, another rebound and sticks from both teams poke the puck right back to Bergeron who one times it home and this surreal adventure has left the Bruins and their fans in euphoria and the Maple Leaf collapse complete.
Toronto players were in shock, utter disbelief. Nazem Kadri was having good thoughts, for a while. “Obviously there were thoughts creeping into your mind, that we might be advancing to the second round,” said Kadri, “but at the end of the day we couldn’t handle the pressure that was given.” Joffrey Lupul tweeted “That hockey game will haunted me till the day I die.”
After many seven game disappontments I still don’t believe what I witnessed last night. The Bruins were dead in the water. Yet they managed to bring their will, their fortitude, their talent, but most of all their experience in these games to that final 10 minutes of regulation and show the young, playoff neophytes what these Stanley Cup Playoffs are really all about!
Wow! Just Wow!