The Bruins have been found lacking in their starts during these last three games against the Montreal Canadiens. For a team that comes out firing on all cylinders, it’s a little frustrating for the fan base. (The Bruins themselves must be feeling that same frustration.) The Bruins will keep fighting, and Claude Julien still believes in his team. “It’s a 2-1 series, and it’s not the end of the world for us,” said the Bruins bench boss. “We’re not panicking by any means.”
While there is no panic in the Bruins team, there is cause for concern. I still hold to the Bruins winning in six games, but they’re going to need to make some improvements to make that prediction happen. The Bruins have been making mistakes (especially in game three) that the Canadiens have been deftly picking up on. Those mistakes have led to scoring chances, and are the biggest reason why the Bruins have had to battle back in all three games.
When a good team doesn’t play up to their potential, the aggrivated fan base want to throw out blame. (Let’s ignore the faction that wants to blame this all on the refs for the time being.) In truth, a lot of the blame has been directed at some of the newer members of the Bruins blueline. Matt Bartkowski and Andrej Meszaros have taken a healthy percentage of the hits from the fans for their play in the Montreal series (and a few of them are justified). Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli chooses not to speculate on their performance. He reminds the fans that these players have worked hard to earn their spots on the roster this year.
“These guys have been good for us. Bartkowski has been good for us all year. He had to come in when Seidenberg got hurt. He had to find his game and fit in, and I think he’s done that. He got sick, and he got of synch a little bit. We acquired Meszaros in a trade. I didn’t mind his game [on Tuesday night]. Everyone can make a mistake here or there, but he made a play on the Iginla goal. My confidence level [in them] is irrelevant.” -Peter Chiarelli
Game four is tonight, and the Bruins will need to cut back on the mental mistakes if they’d like to embarrass the Canadiens and their fans at the Bell Centre. The puck drops at 7:30 pm.