She’s Got a Great Pass!
Saturday afternoon I was at a graduation party (congratulations, Nick!) with a ton of feverish Bruins fans. Obviously, the game was all we were talking about. I asked George what he thought, and his response was, “It'll be a 5-1 blowout. Could go either way. I think it’s a huge statement game.” While George was incorrect about the lopsidedness of the final score, I agree - it was a huge statement game indeed. After being outshot 678 to -4 in the first period and generally being outplayed all over the ice, the Bruins came out for the second far more determined. I am not a big Tuukka Rask fan, but if it weren't for him the score would have been out of hand. His brilliance kept everyone in the game and that’s exactly what you need to win in the playoffs. The ice started shifting back towards the Bruins in period 2, and Chris Kelly (the ugliest guy on the team, nay - the league) got a suitably ugly goal to pull it even. Once the Bruins got through to the third period it became "win a period; win a hockey game" hockey, in which they absolutely thrive. I felt they were all over the Hawks the second half of the game, and Chicago couldn't get one past Rask to save their lives. In OT, it was all Bruins, all the time. Jagr hit the pipe, again, and the Bruins controlled the frame. They outplayed the Hawks and seemed more desperate to win. Perhaps it was the thought of going home down 2, but they were inspired (and it showed) in the chances both sides did or didn't have. Paille’s winner was perfectly placed on Corey Crawford and if the Hawks netminder wasn't aware, the book is out on him. Shoot high glove, and you’ll have success. As soon as the game ended, I flipped over to Heat which was on one of the movie channels I keep threatening to cancel. I caught it right at the diner scene between Pacino and DeNiro. Arguably, one of the greatest movie scenes in the history of film, and a fitting analogy for what had just transpired. In the scene, you have two of the game’s most respected players telling one another they are aware of what the other does, and have no intention of backing down. The mutual respect across the table is palpable and I think it translates well into this season’s final. Both are the best of the best in the game right now, and we’ve seen each team flex their muscles a bit. The Bruins made a statement the other night that despite being down in the series, and down in the game, they were far from finished. The Hawks, on the other hand, have to be a bit concerned after giving Boston their best game and still ending up on the losing end. Then, of course, there's this gem... As the series shifts to Boston, I am feeling like the Bruins have a bit of the momentum on their side. They are coming off a huge win in which they battled all game long, and the Hawks have to be thinking they let a great chance to try and start to put the Bruins away slip through their hands. With Bruins fans behind them on home ice, I feel another statement game coming on - and they will win another nail-biter, 3-2.