If last night was just a one period game, the Chicago Blackhawks would have devastated us. They were everywhere that first period. The Blackhawks put on a shooting exhibition as they outshot the Bruins, 19-4. They had 30 shot attempts to the Bruins’ five (one of the Bruins’ shots was from the neutral zone.) Thankfully, we had Tuukka Rask guarding the house for us. “It looked like they had more guys out there than we did,” Rask said after the game. “They were pouncing on every single puck in front of net, had a lot of chances. We definitely played pretty bad. But, you know, it was good that we were only down by one and regrouped after that.”
“We had the perfect start to the game, then we stopped doing what made us successful,” said Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville. “We stood around. They countered.”
After what looked like one of the Bruins’ worst periods in this year’s post season Coach Claude Julien mixed up his third and fourth lines, putting together Daniel Paille, Tyler Seguin and Chris Kelly. Coach Julien claimed later that it was a “hunch from a coach.” The improvised ‘full meal line’ (Seguin’s the meat, Kelly’s the potato, and Paille brings the Merlot.) went out there and began to click on all cylinders. (Another testament to the player’s comfort playing at any line, and the flexibility of the Bruins’ system.)
The meal tied it up in the second. Paille threw in a shot on Chicago’s crease policeman Corey Crawford, and the rebound bounced over to Kelly, who put it in the net. ”Just because he doesn’t see himself as a goal-scorer doesn’t mean he has to continue to have a goose egg on his stats,” Boston coach Claude Julien said. ”Sometimes that stuff, whether you like it or not, will weigh on you. When you get a night like that, it certainly takes a lot of weight off your shoulders and creates some positive thinking and some positive energy moving forward.” That energy continued for the Bruins through the rest of the game.
As the teams were yet again at an impasse at the end of regulation, the game had to be decided in overtime. The ‘meal line’ came through for Boston and their fans. Three quarters of the way into overtime, Seguin sent the shot across the ice to Daniel Paille, who sent in the wrister that went just under Crawford’s glove to give the Bruins the 2-1 win.
The series is tied one all, with game three coming back home to Boston on Monday. I wonder if Coach will keep this new line as the new ‘third’ line for the rest of the series?