Tonight the Boston Bruins have the chance to go up three games to one against the Toronto Maple Leafs and from that the chance to clinch the series Friday night back at the TD Garden. On the other hand, tonight the Leafs have the chance to yet again even out the series 2-2 and force a game six.
Monday night was a big night for the Bruins having them not only take advantage of the series, but do it in front of a Toronto crowd that hadn’t seen a playoff game IN Toronto since 2004. Needless to say the crowd was pumped but unfortunately didn’t get the win they’d been looking for. Tonights game is also in Toronto so you can bet the crowd will be just as wild in pumping up the Leafs.
Bringing the Bruins Hockey
The Bruins were simply the better team on Monday night. They were winning faceoffs (45-of-75) and not giving up the puck as easily as they were for Game two. It helps that Tuukka Rask is in net because he shut the door on the Leafs Monday stopping 45-of-47 shots. The past two games, it was the defense coming in HUGE for the Bruins scoring wise but game three it was all about the offense. And particularly the line of Nathan Horton, David Krejci, and Milan Lucic, who combined for two goals and eight points in the game three victory. The line has now combined for five goals and 17 points in the series. The Bruins are one of the few teams that have stars on all four lines of their offense and Monday was a prime example of that. If the B’s can continue to work their offensive magic and get past James Reimer or any other Leaf backup, then they should be to pick up the win.
Toronto Can Talk but Can They Win?
It’s no secret that the Maple Leafs were the more dominant team in Game two but they seemed to have lost all of that momentum in Game 3. The Bruins lead the NHL in faceoffs all year so it’s no surprise going up against a mediocre faceoff team like Torono that the B’s would have the upper hand. However the Leafs are reasoning the B’s faceoff success with cheating something Claude Julien refers to as “crying wolf”. When in all actuality the Leafs lost because of all their turnovers and the brick wall that is Rask. The Leafs had a season high 47 shots on net Monday night but only managed two past Rask. If Toronto want’s to win they’ll have to figure out what the spark was on Saturday that gave them the edge and use it. Otherwise the B’s offense will complete to run through their defense.
For the Bruins, it’s David Krecji. Krecji right now is easily playing the best postseason of his career with two goals and seven points in just three games. Those stats lead all players in the postseason. Krecji’s liney Milan Lucic is also having a stellar performance thus far with a five-point scoring streak and six assists in the three playoff games. On Toronto’s end is Boston’s fave Phil Kessel who has registered a goal in each of the past two games.
The puck drops tonight at 7pm tonight and you can check it out on NESN!
BELIEVE IN BOSTON!