BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens don’t always play nice against each other, and that’s one of the many reasons why fans love it when the two teams square off — especially in the playoffs.
Each teams is guilty of their own offenses. The Canadiens are known divers/embellishers, and more than a few of the Bruins are guilty of taking a few extra shots at their opponent following a whistle.
But with a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals on the line, the Bruins may want to think twice before taking part in those antics.
CBSBoston.com Bruins blogger Matt Kalman joined Felger & Mazz on Thursday, ahead of Game 1 of the Bruins-Habs series, and his key for the Bruins is very simple.
“The key to the series is not to do anything stupid,” said Kalman. “They tried to do some stupid stuff in the last series and Detroit wouldn’t dance with them. Just go out and play hockey. Why would you allow them to think they are getting under your skin? Wouldn’t it piss them off even more if you just ignored them every time and just skated away from them?
“We all know you’re tough – who are you proving your toughness to at this point? Just go out there and win,” he said. “Wait until you’re up 3-1 in the series if that’s what it comes down to. It’s stupid to do it now.”
But can the Bruins resist taking part in such shenanigans, especially when the Canadiens will provide plenty of dance partners?
“We know they can’t. Lucic is going to be looking for someone’s nuts to hit, and Marchand will be snowing guys. You know it’s going to happen every time,” he said. “These guys always have to mess with them and prove their manhood.”
Kalman admits that Boston will need to play with their normal edge, but he’d like to see them do so within the whistle.
“Hit guys within the game, and that ticks Montreal off more than anything,” he said. “Play your hockey, play your style, but you don’t have to do all the other nonsense. If you need that to get motivated in the series, that’s ridiculous”
Aside from keeping their cool, Kalman said getting a few of their star scorers going is another big key for Boston against Montreal.
“Krejci or Marchand, they have to get one of these players going. Igninla too, he’s kind of skating in quick-sand right now,” said Kalman. “One of those guys needs to get going, because I don’t think you’re going to get a goal from (Justin) Florek, (Jordan) Caron and all those points from (Dougie) Hamilton [like the first round against Detroit]. You need your best players to be an X-factor.”
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