BOSTON (CBS) — As the Boston Bruins got ready for overtime Thursday night, they knew there was going to be a big swing in the series one way or another.
If they scored first, they’d head home with the series tied 2-2 and home-ice in what would be a best-of-three series. If Montreal won, they’d be staring at a 3-1 deficit and tasked with the near-impossible: win three straight against the Habs or their season would be over.
Luckily for the Bruins, Thursday morning call-up Matt Fraser crashed the net on a Carl Soderberg drive, and just two minutes into the extra frame the 23-year-old netted his first playoff goal in his first career playoff game.
Bruins defenseman Torey Krug, who was a postseason hero himself last year against the New York Rangers, joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Gresh & Zolak on Friday, and said Fraser’s teammates couldn’t be happier for the young forward.
“It was great for him. We’re all excited that he was able to come up and contribute like that. If he was able to put that into words good for him, because its a tough feeling to explain,” Krug said of Fraser, who came to Boston in the summer blockbuster that send Tyler Seguin to Dallas. “He has a nose for the back of the net, and it was right place, right time. Good for him.
“That’s a big situation right there,” said Krug. “There’s a very small difference between a 3-1 deficit and a 2-2 series. We feel very fortunate to be on this side of things, and now we have home-ice advantage back.”
The Bruins have struggled to get good shots on Montreal goaltender Carey Price, hitting numerous posts and bringing back memories of the “high glass” Bruins of a couple years ago, and Krug said the team decided to change their angles a bit for Game 4.
“We met as a team, and (Montreal does) a great job blocking shots. Their D has stepped up in front of Price, so we had to change up angles and spread out the offensive zone,” Krug explained. “We changed our angles and caused some havoc. The overtime goal was just a scramble in front and our guys were able to out-battle them and get one by them.”
Boston’s top line of David Krejci-Milan Lucic-Jarome Iginla played better Thursday night, but are still struggling to produce. Lucic and Iginla have a goal apiece (one coming on an empty net), but Krejci has yet to find the back of the net this series. It’s causing some concern among fans, but Krug and the Bruins aren’t worried.
“These guys are the players they are for a reason and their track record speaks for themselves. Once they get one the floodgates will open,” he said. “Last night I thought they skated well and had the puck in the offensive zone a lot. I don’t think anyone here is too worried about it.”
Closing the interview on a lighter note, Gresh & Zo asked Krug about his playoff beard, which isn’t going so well.
“It’s going better than last year. I’m not pleased with it,” he said, adding that fellow blue-liner Johnny Boychuk has the best of the bunch. “I’m giving it all I’ve got.”