BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Bruins are gearing up for the 2012 NHL playoffs, as they try to keep the Stanley Cup in Boston.
Bruins center Patrice Bergeron joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Gresh & Zo to discuss the Bruins preparations for the Capitals, with their first-round series set to open Thursday night at the Garden.
“They’re deep. We talk about their skills with their top guys, but if you look at all their role players, their third and fourth lines, they have guys that can score goals and guys that can grind it out,” Bergeron said of the Capitals. “It’s about making sure that we’re ready as a whole team to counter that and playing our game early. We also know they come hard; they’re a team that likes physicality. It’s something we don’t mind as well, so they’re going to be tough games; we expect that from Game 1 down to Game 7.”
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The Bruins will have their hands full with superstar Alex Ovechkin, who had 38 goals in what was seen as a “down season.” While Bergeron isn’t sure which line he and linemates Tyler Seguin and Brad Marchand will be called upon to go against, he is confident they’ll be able to handle whatever task is thrown their way.
“It’s not going to change from what we did in the regular season. It’s about taking care of our own zone and going from there,” said Bergeron. “We’re a line that has good speed on both my wings, and we’re trying to use that to our advantage. But we can’t take away the defensive side of our game; we’re going to be playing against some great players and we need to respect that.”
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Bergeron also discussed Wednesday’s announcement that Nathan Horton will miss the playoffs with post-concussion symptoms. While the B’s are disappointed they won’t have Horton on the ice for their playoff run, his overall health is what is most important.
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“As much as we’d like to have him back –as much as we’ve missed him and will miss him in the playoffs – it’s adversity that we need to overcome as a team and that we’ve dealt with the last 30-games or so,” said Bergeron. “For him, it’s really about his health; getting back 100-percent and not having the pressure, or putting the pressure on himself, to try to come back.”