WILMINGTON (CBS) – All that was missing today in the Bruins’ dressing room at Ristuccia Arena was forward Brad Marchand throwing on a red dress like Little Orphan Annie and singing “The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow.”
Positivity rang out from all the Bruins’ voices a little more than 12 hours after Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban ended Game 1 of the Eastern Conference first round series with a power-play goal in double overtime.
The Bruins lost on the scoreboard, 4-3, but won on the shot clock, 51-33. Of course, you don’t get points for trying, so the Bruins will take the ice for Game 2 on Saturday down 1-0 in the series.
Although just three of their 51 shots on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price and 98 shot attempts overall found the back of the net, the Bruins were sort of giddy. There was plenty of talk about a sleepless night, especially from David Krejci, who could’ve turned Game 1 in the Bruins’ favor if he’d cashed in on several chances. Krejci even somehow missed the net on a breakaway. Instead of a potential hat trick against the Canadiens, Krejci left the Garden with a goose egg. However, he’s not considering sitting out the rest of the series or retiring.
“Obviously it was a tough, tough night last night. You have all those breakaways in your head and trying to not think about it,” Krejci said after most of the Bruins’ regulars met for meetings and an off-ice workout. “But it’s there. So I feel a little better today but it’s still frustrating. So have a good sleep tonight and make sure I’m going to put some pucks in the net tomorrow.”
Krejci and linemates Jarome Iginla and Milan Lucic were all goal-less. Boston got two goals from defensemen – Torey Krug and Johnny Boychuk – and one from second-line forward Reilly Smith.
Still most of the Bruins spoke as though they were looking forward to Game 2. They compared this series to the last one, when the Bruins lost Game 1 to the Detroit Red Wings but then won four in a row to advance to the second round. In fact, they lost that Game 1-0 so they should be encouraged that they were clicking on almost all cylinders offensively in the opener.
Most of all the Bruins didn’t want to build a shrine to Price.
“He’s human,” said Marchand, who was equally inept as Krejci and his linemates when it came to finishing in Game 1. “We’re hopefully going to be able to score on him. … And we want to be persistent and not give up at any point in the game. Playoffs, anything can happen and you’ve got to play right to the buzzer. That proved that last night.”
There’s no way Montreal gives up as many chances in Game 2 as it did in the first game. And the Canadiens are sure to test Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask more in the second game than they did in the opener. But the Bruins are right. If they play the way they did in the second half of the first game, and don’t just shoot on Price but make those shots difficult to see and make passes that are hard to track, they should at least be able to play with the lead.
There were no cloudy skies hovering over the Bruins yet. You can bet your bottom dollar though that things will get stormy if the Bruins don’t solve Price more and get the home-ice split.
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