“Look, we were outplayed for two games, certainly”, Maple Leafs defenseman Ron Hainsey said. Will Boston manage to win a second straight game on their home ice tonight to take a commanding series lead?
It has to start with the Leafs better players, the way it has started with the Bruins best players.
Pastrnak scored his third goal of the game with 1:36 to play in the third for a hat trick as the Bruins cruised to the 7-3 win.
Through two games, the Bruins top line has accounted for 20 points, 13 of which came Saturday night.
No doubt Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock has watched the tape over and over while game planning how to counter Boston’s attack.
In a video released with its ruling, the league noted Kadri was a three-peat offender and that “with sufficient time to adjust his course or minimize the force, (Kadri) instead drives relentlessly into the defenceless Wingels”.
Third Period_8, Boston, Pastrnak 3 (Marchand, Bergeron), 12:34. Defenseman Torey Krug set the play in motion with a hard rush through the neutral zone in the middle of the ice. They might want to rebrand on Sunday, and somehow find a physical answer to Boston’s tough, aggressive play.
One player on that top line, in particular, brought something special to the table.
“It’s kind of insane how things worked out”, forward Brad Marchand said after practice Wednesday.
It’s the same question that the Winnipeg Jets faced a few years ago after getting swept by the Anaheim Ducks in the first round of the 2015 playoffs.
The Bruins, who had pulled away from the Leafs in the second half of Game 1 for a 5-1 victory, played without winger Tommy Wingels, who sustained an upper body injury in Game 1 on a hit by Nazem Kadri that resulted in the Leafs forward receiving a three-game suspension from the NHL Department of Player Safety.
Toronto has a young, quick team that played a far more competitive game than the score indicated in game one.
“Generally speaking, we’ve allowed our players to play”, Cassidy said.
“A lot of people in Boston already know how good he is”, linemate Patrice Bergeron said. “I thought first couple periods (of Game 2) we did a good job against them”. If they choose to give him the night off, however, the team may go with Anton Khudobin (16-15-15 record, .913 save percentage, 2.56 goals against average). In only two games he has 9 points this postseason.
“We had a good run after that”, Rask said. The line has 20 points in two games.
“[Stuff] happens in hockey”, Matthews said when a reporter compared the points differential between the two first lines. Give them credit, they’re playing real well, that line, they’ve been good on the power play, good at 5-on-5, everything they throw at the net’s going in. Take the lessons, what they have for you. “At the end of the day, our guys do believe – from one to 12, I do believe our guys believe they can score”.
The last thing the Leafs needed was to leave Boston without a victory before returning to Toronto. “The way I look at it, there are so many things we can do better”. Curtis McElhinney, who came in to replace the Leafs’ No. 1 didn’t fare much better. Rick Nash, Jake DeBrusk, and David Krejci were all able to put the puck in the net.
Here’s what we know: the Bruins, who might have the best forward line in the National Hockey League, are proving to be a logistical nightmare for the Leafs. At a time where the Bruins were playing a little more loosely, Rask made sure his team sat in the proverbial driver’s seat with some timely stops as the Leafs were making a push.
“It’s a seven game series for a reason, so there is no reason to get down and frustrated this early in the series”, said Tyler Bozak. The under is 6-2-2 in the last 10 meetings. We’ve got last change [at home].
The NHL hit Nazem Kadri and the Maple Leafs hard for his risky check on Bruins forward Tommy Wingels.