Bruins drop game 2 in OT, face 0-2 hole
The Bruins dropped a tough one in game 2, losing in overtime 3-2. The final blow was dealt by a player who shouldn’t even have been on the ice. Alex Burrows was not suspended by the NHL for a clear biting incident, and ended up with 2 goals and 1 assist in last nights game. That just stings, as the Bruins could have won this game if he wasn’t on the ice. I said before the series started that the Canucks would win, but still, I would like to see Boston win. The Canucks won fair and square, but it just feels like the NHL took a win away from the Bruins. Boston now faces another 0-2 deficit in theses playoffs. Manny Malhotra was in his 1st game for Vancouver since a severe eye injury on March 16. He wasn’t much of a factor, as much as it was just good to see him playing again.
An important game 2 is on in Vancouver. There’s a much slower pace to this game to start. Johnny Boychuk laid a huge hit on Ryan Kessler in the Boston zone, hammering him into the boards. A perfectly legal hit, but it left Kessler a little woozy. He was slow to get up, and then skated over to the Vancouver bench. Vancouver narrowly scored off a point shot by Salo, that bounced up and over Thomas into the crease. But the puck was swept away by Seidenberg, saving Boston of any trouble. Boston came back with a huge chance of their own off a face-off win in the attacking zone. The puck was sent to the far boards, where Lucic retrieved it. He passed to the slot to Horton, who passed between a Canuck’s legs to Kreci in front of Luongo. He tried to deke him out, but the defenseman clamped down on Kreci’s stick. Kreci worked his stick away, and got a shot off, but Luongo was ready for it. Midway through the 1st, Luongo had already made 9 saves. As the Canucks were clearing their zone, Kessler went out to challenge the puck. Chara got in his way, and Kessler just lowered his head and rammed into him and fell to the ice. The officials felt that was enough for an interference call, and Boston was on the pk at 10:24. The Bruins pk was stifling the Vancouver powerplay. The Canucks were not getting any good shots on net, and the Bruins looked like they would kill another penalty off. But with just 12 seconds left, the Canucks would get on the board. There was a battle for the puck in the near circle, and Burrows just flung a shot on net that found a way through Thomas. This is just an insult. Burrows shouldn’t even be in this game, and now he’s scored an important powerplay goal for the Canucks. Vancouver now had a 1-0 lead at 12:12. The 2 teams skated up-and-down the ice now. Neither team could get control of the puck. Off a face-off in the Boston zone, the puck was won by Boston. Adam McQuaid had the puck, but Daniel Sedin hooked him, and stole the puck away from him. He got a point-blank shot on net, but Thomas blocked it away. There was no penalty called for some reason, on a clear hook by Sedin. The 1st period would come to a close with the Vancouver Canucks up 1-0.
The 2nd period started with a powerplay for the Bruins. Kevin Bieksa was called for delay of game, off a puck that appeared to hit off the high glass before it went out of play. Nonetheless, a very important powerplay for the Bruins. Vancouver was the team creating scoring chances though. The puck was taken by Raymond in the Boston zone, and he skated into the slot. He made a deke, but tripped up himself. The puck came out to the high slot, and Ehrhoff came flying in and got a one-timer off. But Thomas made a huge stop to keep the Canucks off the board. Boston came back with a chance of its own, when Lucic took the puck along the near boards. He passed down to Ryder, who skated towards the net. He centered a pass for Recchi in the slot, but Luongo denied him a goal. The powerplay would go without a goal again, and the game remained 1-0. Boston had a chance off a feed from Horton in the slot, to Kreci at the near post. But Luongo again denied the Bruins their 1st goal of this series. Vancouver started to take control of this game though. The Bruins were having a hard time getting out of their own zone, and were turning the puck over. But the Bruins stayed resilient, and finally the 1st line brought the puck into the attacking zone. Lucic had the puck in the corner, and he passed to Kreci at the far post. Kreci took the puck away from the net, to the bottom of the far circle. He passed back up to Ference at the point, who took a shot. The puck was stopped by Luongo, but the rebound came to Milan Lucic. Lucic outmuscled Erihoff, and just put the puck by the right skate of Luongo. Boston had tied the game at 1, 9:00 into the 2nd. Boston came right back with a chance off the rush. Kreci took the puck through the neutral zone, and into the near circle. He sent a pass across ice to Horton, who tipped the puck on net. But Luongo made a great lateral move to make the save. Boston would then go on the powerplay, after Aaron Rome was called for holding Marchand along the sideboards at 10:26. The Bruins would actually capitalize on this one. Chara had the puck at the point, and just sent an easy shot on net. The puck was deflected in front by Recchi, and went into the Vancouver net. Boston suddenly had a 2-1 lead at 11:35, after doing virtually no work to really get back into this game. Boston had just caught a couple good bounces, and now had the lead. Vancouver came right back with a scoring chance. LaPierre dumped the puck into the Boston zone, where McQuaid went back to get it. He passed up the boards to Kaberle, but he was run off the puck by Higgins. Kessler came in and picked the puck up, and took the puck into the near circle. He then passed across ice to Hansen for a one-timer, but Tim Thomas made a spectacular save with his right pad to keep the Canucks off the board. Up-and-down the ice these 2 teams went, with neither team able to control the puck again. The Bruins would then go back on the powerplay, after Aaron Rome was called for interference at 18:59, as the Bruins were trying to breakout of their own zone. The Bruins now had a huge chance to extend their lead off another powerplay. Nothing would happen at the end of this period, so the Bruins would have a shortened powerplay to start the 3rd. Boston would exit the 2nd period with an all important 2-1 lead.
The Bruins started the period with 1:01 left on their powerplay. Boston had nothing going, and the powerplay would be negated after Dennis Seidenberg hit Lapierre with his leg. That resulted in a tripping call at 52 seconds into the 3rd. So they skated 4-on-4 for 8 seconds, and then the Canucks went on the powerplay for 1:52. A very important kill for the Bruins to keep the lead and the momentum in this game. The Bruins were up to the task denying the Canucks any good scoring chances. Boston kept its 2-1 lead. 5 minutes into the period, Boston was out shooting the Canucks 3-0. An interesting play here, as the Canucks had the puck in the Boston zone. A point shot was taken, but Thomas was taken out after Boychuk checked Torres into him. That left the net wide open, but the puck bounced on Janik Hansen, and the Boston defense collapsed onto him. But Vancouver would capitalize on another chance just a few minutes later. Boston would turn the puck over twice in their own zone to Alex Burrows. The puck was eventually deflected out of play, but it resulted in a face-off in the Boston zone. The puck was won by Vancouver, and held in the Boston zone. There was a battle for puck possession in the far corner, which was won and passed back to the point by Vancouver. Edler took a shot from the point, that was deflected in front by Daniel Sedin. Burrows picked the puck up, passed to the near slot to Sedin, who just put a shot by the right leg of Thomas. Vancouver had tied this game at 2, 9:37 into the 3rd period. Burrows strikes again, in a game he never should have been apart of. These 2 teams were again battling up-and-down the ice. The Bruins had the puck in the offensive zone, when Boychuk took an odd shot from the point. He tried to angle the puck wide, and shot it across ice to the corner boards. The puck came up the boards, and was knocked further ahead by Vancouver. Vancouver now had a 2-on-1 up ice with the Sedin twins. As Henrik Sedin skated through the far circle, Ference’s back pressure poked the puck away from him. Boston brought the puck back up ice, but it was again taken away by Vancouver. They now had a 4-on-1 up ice. LaPierre had the puck skating into the far circle, and he tried to make a centering pass. But McQuaid went to one knee to break up the pass, and there was a scrum at the net for the puck. The Canucks were playing much better at the end of this period. They had momentum purely on their side now. But the Bruins kept on fighting, and were able to work it to the end of the period. So this game would have an overtime, as the game was tied at 2 after 3 periods of play.
The overtime has started, and Vancouver had a chance. Ference had the puck after the face-off in the neutral zone, and he tried to pass it ahead. The puck was knocked down by Sedin, and passed ahead to Burrows. He was 1-on-1 with Chara on his right, and he skated through the far circle. He held the puck, and Thomas dove out to stop the puck. But Burrows held ont it, went around the net, and tapped the puck into a wide open net. Vancouver had scored just 11 seconds into the overtime, and now had a 2-0 lead in the Stanley Cup Finals, winning game 2, 3-2.
A tough game for the Bruins to lose, and they now face a gigantic 2-0 hole against the Canucks. Boston played well in this game. The scored 2 goals in the 2nd period, when it felt like they hadn’t even done anything offensively to get themselves back into this game. Even the powerplay scored in last nights game. When the Bruins score on the powerplay and don’t win, it just makes me crazy. The one thing that I am absolutely livid about though is the fact that Alex Burrows was in tonight’s game. He singlehandedly gave the Bruins the loss. Burrows had the 1st goal of the game on the powerplay with just 12 seconds left. Then he had an assist on the 2nd goal of the game. And to top things off, he scored the game-winning goal 11 seconds into overtime. He should not have even been in this game!! The NHL totally blew that call not suspending him, and while they may not have been the reason the Bruins lost last night, they certainly didn’t help. The Canucks are a better team than the Bruins, this is a fact. In my opinion, the Canucks are going to win this series. The Bruins had every chance to stop Burrows, or score more goals, or whatever the case may have been. But the fact that every hockey fan felt Burrows should have been suspended except for the NHL executives, is very frustrating when he’s the reason you lost. I defiantly feel like the NHL screwed the Bruins over.
As for the game itself, Boston played very slow. The Bruins looked good in the 1st, but after that powerplay goal they allowed, they looked different. They had no urgency in their play. The offense wasn’t doing anything productive. It looked an awful lot like game 1, where Boston was getting shots on Luongo, but weren’t getting any good scoring chances. Both of their goals were dirty goals, and it took a bit of luck to get them. Vancouver wasn’t any better. The Sedin goal was pure skill, but Burrows goals were a bit lucky. The 1st one just surprised Thomas, while his 2nd one was a result of Thomas doing too much. Thomas is the reason Boston was even in this game, stopping 30 of 33 shots. But I feel like he thought that he had to be Superman against Burrows in OT, because he didn’t think any Bruin was going to stop Burrows. Make of that what you will. This game just comes down to turnovers.
Boston turned the puck over in their own zone for the powerplay goal by Burrows, and they turned the puck over in their own zone, resulting in a face-off win and eventual goal by Sedin. The 3rd goal scored by Burrows was a result of a turnover by Ference in the neutral zone. Boston needs to improve their puck control, and improve their shot taking. Luongo hasn’t been challenged that much in the 1st two games, so he hasn’t had to stand on his head to keep his team in this series. Meanwhile, if Thomas doesn’t stand on his head, Boston doesn’t stand a chance in this series.
The Bruins should have won this game, and now face another 0-2 hole in this postseason. I thought the Canucks would win the Stanley Cup, and now I am more reassured at this. The Canucks are too good to lose a 2-0 advantage. I don’t think the Bruins will get swept, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they lose this series 4-1. I expect the Bruins to win game 3, as the TD Garden will be rocking. The Bruins need to win both games at home, as there is no way they will win game 5 down 3-1. I look for the Bruins to win game 3, but we’ll have to wait and see how I feel about game 4.