BOSTON (CBS) – The Canadiens’ P.K. Subban was a menace through the first three games of this series, but Thursday night in Montreal he was basically a non-factor.
Dave Goucher of the 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Bruins Radio Network joined Toucher & Rich Friday morning to discuss the Bruins’ pivotal Game 4 overtime win and explain how the B’s were able to shut down Subban.
“They took [Subban] away pretty good. I thought in the neutral zone they were really good. That’s an area where a lot of times, if he can free wheel it, it’s gonna make for a long night. That was one thing. I thought they were real good in the center of the ice,” said Goucher.
Slowing Subban down and frustrating him played a large part in the win and holding the Canadiens to zero goals, as well as the Bruins, for the second game in a row now, being on their best behavior and only going to the penalty box once.
“And the other thing was the Bruins only took one penalty. Much like they did in Game 3, they didn’t allow the Canadiens to get going on the power play, and more specifically Subban on the power play. No question it was the best they’ve done in the first four games limiting Subban’s ability to create offense and to make plays. I thought that was a big part of what they did last night,” said Goucher.
Getting the win and evening the series at two games apiece sure was nice, but in talking with T&R you could sense a hint of frustration in Goucher’s voice concerning the Bruins.
Echoing the same sentiment as Bruins president Cam Neely Thursday afternoon on Felger & Massarotti, Goucher feels like the Bruins have yet to hit their stride in this series and are still playing hockey at less than their best.
“They’re 2-2 in the series and I don’t think as a team they’ve played their best. Game 1 I thought they deserved to win. They had a great third period in Game 2. Game 3 they weren’t very good. They were better last night, so I guess that’s the positive to take out of it. They’re 2-2 in the series and the [David] Krejci line hasn’t really been a part of it yet,” said Goucher.
It’s cliche to say, but the Bruins need to get back to playing “their style of hockey.” They’ve showed flashes of it in spurts, but that hasn’t translated yet to dominating an entire game.
“When the Bruins are going, they are a physically grinding, hard, and really a pain in the ass of a team to play against. And that really has not been the case yet. I hope they can get back to that.
“They still haven’t played their best hockey yet and they’re still in a good spot in this series, but the margins have been really thing. They lost in double overtime in Game 1, Matt Fraser is the hero last night in Game 4, and I don’t know if that’s gonna change much because I just think these two teams are pretty even.
“From the Bruins standpoint they can still play better, and hopefully that starts Saturday night,” said Goucher in closing.
Listen below for the full discussion, including an update on Chris Kelly and Tuukka Rask having his best game of the series: