The NHL has come accustomed to watching Patrick Kane score big goals when his team desperately needs someone to light the lamp. Last night in game five was no different, Patrick Kane was rolling while singlehandedly willing his team to victory, and 3-2 series lead heading into game six on Monday night. For Bruin fans, many were reliving a nightmare that they hadn’t had to worry with since the end of the regular season. Closing out the season the Bruins seemed to limp into the playoffs, but in the postseason they have been a totally different team. In games four and five, the B’s seemed to fall back into that lackluster play from the end of regular season, which is why it’s no surprise that they have surrendered two games in a row now.
The Bruins started the game with a bit of a chip on their shoulder, but that impressive play would only last for the first five minutes or so of the first period. When a team is this far into the playoffs, playing good in spurts just isn’t going to cut it. The second period was the worst brand of hockey that the Bruins have had all postseason long. They only had five shots on net, while the Blackhawks got an alarming thirteen total shots on net in the period. Patrick Kane scored the only two goals for the Hawks (not including the empty net goal), and seemed to be a man on a mission the whole game. The lone goal for the Bruins was scored by Zdeno Chara, which was setup by none other than David Krejci. Chara really needed to have a good game, as in game four he was basically non-existent, and finished off the game with a (-3) overall. Other than scoring the goal, Chara was much of the same player Bruin fans saw in game four. He seemed to be a step slower than usual, and just wasn’t the big bully most have come used to seeing each night.
I don’t think people are being honest with themselves if they say that this loss was all on the Bruins. While the Bruins didn’t play their best hockey, let’s not stray away from giving the Blackhawks some credit. They have really answered the question they were asked going into this series, “can they handle the physical pressure that the Bruins will bring?” They were rattled to start, but they have come out the past two games (especially in game five) and responded well to everything the Bruins have thrown at them. Rask has been superb as usual, and in game five he really kept the Bruins in the game. For most of the game, Rask stood on his head while making some spectacular saves. If the B’s didn’t have Rask in net, this game could have very easily been 4-0 going into the third period.
Game five was a game that I feel the Bruins will need to somehow put behind them. They have no reason to sit and sulk about their poor play, they just need to gather the troops and march forward. However, they might be missing one of their troops, Patrice Bergeron, who went down with an undisclosed injury, and didn’t return to game in action. The Bruins will desperately need him moving forward because the chances of winning the Cup while be bumped down a little if he can’t return to game action. The main thing the Bruins need to do in game six is this, take care of the puck, win the loose puck opportunities, and get back to helping Rask out by clearing the net. If they can do those things, and score some goals along the way, I think we will be talking about a game seven for all the marbles.
“I think it was a big effort by everyone to come back, play defensively, block shots, sacrifice our bodies to block those pucks and quickly get on to offense.” *Zdeno Chara
“[on game six] It’s do or die, we’ve been there before, and we’ve done well in that situation.” *Coach Claude Julien
“We’re going to fight, were going to fight with everything we have, and force game seven.” *David Krejci
Game NotesBruins rookie Carl Soderberg made his first career playoff appearance. Patrice Bergeron went down with an undisclosed injury, left the game. Jonathan Toews went to the bench with an undisclosed injury, and wouldn’t return.