Game 3: Boston Bruins (1-1) vs. Montreal Canadiens (1-1)
Location: Bell Centre
Time: 7:30 p.m.
TV/Radio: NBCSN/98.5 The Sports Hub
The Boston Bruins will be behind enemy lines on Tuesday night for Game 3, as their second-round playoff series with the Montreal Canadiens shifts to the Bell Centre. The two sides split the opening pair of games in Boston. Game 1 was won in double overtime by the Candiens while the Bruins emerged victorious after mounting a late comeback in Game 2.
With the series deadlocked at one game aside, the Bruins will look to build upon the offensive onslaught they unleashed down the stretch in Game 2. Dougie Hamilton, Patrice Bergeron, Reilly Smith and Milan Lucic all scored third period goals in Saturday’s win.
The Bruins hope Carey Price‘s confidence will be a bit rattled after they scored at will on him in Game 3′s most crucial moments. Though Montreal’s goaltender seems to think Boston’s comeback was nothing more than pure luck. “They got pretty lucky I thought.”
Following the improbable comeback, the Bruins appear to be a mighty wave ready to roll. As if squaring off with their hated rival in hostile territory wasn’t providing Claude Julien‘s club with sufficient enough motivation, Price’s words just add fuel to the fire.
Tuukka Rask took note of Price’s comments saying, “you’ve got to be good to be lucky, sometimes, too.” Rask snapped a dreadful skid against the Canadiens with a 25 save performance in Game 3.
The Bell Centre crowd will be rowdy, loud and distracting. Montreal will look to feed off their energy, hoping it will in turn throw the Bruins off their game.
Boston will need to get off to a strong start in this tilt by establishing their brand of hockey considering the environment they’ll be in. They must play a disciplined game and steer clear of the penalty box. The last thing the Bruins want to do is gave the Montreal faithful something to cheer about.
“I think good starts make for, most of the time, good games,” said Julien following Monday’s practice. “We don’t get rattled as a team.”
Montreal’s Game 2 defeat was their first of the playoffs. It was Boston’s second come-from-behind win of the postseason.
Boston will be primed to regain home-ice in the series if they avoid Montreal’s antics. The Canadiens have baited the Bruins into several costly penalties thus far.
Thomas Vanek scored two powerplay goals on Saturday. The Bruins will look to render him a non-factor through strict defense and by keeping the door to the sin bin closed.
Hamilton and Bergeron are riding multi-game point streaks. Hamilton has tallied points in five consecutive games, including two goals. Bergeron has points in six straight.
The Canadiens closing ability has been questionable. They’ve blown 3-1 leads on two seperate occassions in this series. Boston holds a psychological advanatage in that department and will be gunning to plant a seed of doubt in the minds of their Original Six foe.