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Category: Boston-Bruins

Eastern final lived up to the hype


Well, it doesn’t get much better than that.

If Bruins 1, Lightning 0 didn’t have you ohhing and ahhing Friday night then sports just isn’t your thing. The game also proved the point once again that you don’t need six or seven goals a game to have a terrific game.

Great efforts all the way around and if not for Nathan Horton’s goal, we might all still be watching. That’s how good the goaltending and defensive play was in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

“First of all, we knew we had to play a 60-minute game tonight,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said. “There couldn’t be a 10-minute lapse in our game. In Game 7, you’ve got to be so focused. Our guys did a great job.

“When I walked into the room before that third period, I really didn’t have much to say because I could hear what they were talking about, and they were bang on,” Julien said. “The message was clear. It was direct. It was what you wanted to hear from your players. So I came in just said a couple of things and basically said we shouldn’t have to change anything. We just gotta stick with it and eventually we get rewarded. And that’s what happened.”

“I think it was in overtime the entire game, to be honest with you,” Lightning coach Guy Boucher said. “That’s how it felt. I think the other team probably felt like that too. It was for who was going to make that one mistake. And it was us.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, Phil_Coffey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

All We Can Do Is Wait

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

As many stories as there are between these clubs, and Boston’s Game 7 triumph over Tampa Bay along with the possible surprise return of Manny Malhotra to the Vancouver lineup added two more on Friday, it’s going to be difficult, to say the least, for the league to maintain some momentum through the next five days.

Even worse, after waiting that long for Game 1, the league then has two more off days planned. Now, it’s not like fans in either city won’t watch, or the tickets won’t be sold out in both towns. But still, it’s a peculiar strategy to follow for a league that’s always trying to be more than regional, more than a niche sport or an afterthought in major tracts of North America.

At least this absurd schedule will give NBC execs some time to come to grips with the terrifying reality of having to explain to its viewers where Vancouver is and what a “Canuck” might possibly be. Boston, of course, will make the network that is apparently now in charge of announcing the NHL’s post-season schedule happy. Very happy. Expect to see endless replays of Orr’s flying-through-the-air goal against St. Louis, plus lots of Red Sox, Patriots and Celtics comparisons.

The Mother Corp, meanwhile, has to be thrilled with Vancouver, having drawn four million sets of eyeballs for the Canucks clinching match against San Jose.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Vancouver Canucks, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Boston Fans Get What They Deserve

from Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe,

The Bruins’ long-awaited return to the finals gives Boston a chance to become the first city to win championships in all the major sports in less than a decade. Should the Bruins win the Cup next month, the local team with the longest championship drought would be the Patriots, who haven’t won since way back in . . . 2005.

Certainly no fans are more worthy of a championship run than Bruins fans. They get knocked down, but they get up again.

“They’ve been supportive of this team through thick and thin,’’ said 43-year-old Mark Recchi. “Tonight, we could hear them while we were still in our [locker] room, before warm-ups. We were like, ‘Oh, they’re ready.’ ’’

The regular (not a pink hat in the bunch) sweater-clad 17,565 filed into the air-conditioned barn with considerable trepidation. In each of the last three seasons the Bruins finished their playoff run with a Game 7 loss. Hub Hockey Krishnas have schooled their young on a 39-year Cup drought, which is encroaching on territory formerly occupied by citizens of Red Sox Nation.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Post-Game 7 Comments: Bruins Coach Claude Julien

Q. Just comment on Nathan Horton delivering two Game 7 game-winning goals for you.

COACH JULIEN:  Well, he certainly has played like a big-game player obviously.  Overtime goals and winning goals.  And I think for a guy who hasn’t played in the Playoffs for many years, he certainly has kept a lot of energy inside of him and a lot of obviously excitement to go out there and play the way he did.

And we thought it was fitting, not just for him, but for our team.  I think this was probably one of our better games that we’ve played as far as there’s no big mistakes that I saw in the game.  I thought it was a well-played Game 7.

We had energy.  We had confidence.  And certainly had some chances earlier on.  But their goaltender was extremely good for them and kept them in the game.

But I thought it was a hard-fought series.  Tampa Bay certainly deserves a lot of credit.  The fact that where they were before this year for the last few seasons and to come back this year and play the way they did, and then push us straight to the limit in the third round of the Playoffs, I think they deserve a lot of credit.

From the ownership down, they’ve obviously done a pretty good job.  And they certainly gave us all we could take.  So I think even though they lost, I think they need to be congratulated on their season.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: claude+julien, playoffs, transcript

Post-Game 7 Comments: Lightning Coach Guy Boucher

Q.  Could you just describe your emotions—obviously your team laid it all out on the line in Game 7—what you’re feeling right now?

COACH BOUCHER:  Obviously it’s difficult.  It’s difficult because you know what your players put on the ice is every little ounce of energy is left that they have, so there’s a lot of respect that comes at the end of this.

It’s difficult because we were playing these Playoffs for Wayne Fleming.  And we know he’s going through a hard battle right now.  And we knew that every win that we got put a smile on his face.  So that was really important to us.

And it’s too bad we couldn’t put a smile on his face tonight.  But we certainly recognize everything he’s done for this team and how close we felt as a family.  And obviously he was a big part of it.

So I guess there’s losing but there’s a lot more than that for us.  We had a year that was so full of adversity.  You start the year and you have half the team that’s new, an entire staff that’s new, an administration that’s new.  GM and president, CEO and owner, and so many new people coming together, and I just think it’s outstanding that the players and everybody else involved in the organization was able to get this team to be a team real fast.  That’s really difficult, even with a team that you had the previous year.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: guy+boucher, playoffs, transcript

ECF Post-Game Talk

Tampa Bay Lightning Coach Guy Boucher meets with the media.

Nathan Horton, then Patrice Bergeron with Scott Oake of HNIC below…

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Boston a Tough Contest for Vancouver

From Matthew Sekeres at the Globe & Mail:

“Boston is maybe the best defensive team in the league,” winger Daniel Sedin said. “A great goalie [Tim Thomas] when he is hot, and good defencemen. It’s a solid matchup.”

Some might say Boston poses a difficult matchup for the Canucks, who had 117 points in the regular season, 14 more than their opponent.

The Bruins were the best five-on-five team in the league this season, scoring 1.4 goals for every one they allowed. Vancouver was second at 1.32. Boston also ranked second in goals against average (2.30) during the campaign, trailing only the Canucks (2.20).

Against the 10 best teams in goals-against average, the Canucks were 9-8-2 this season. Against the 10 best teams at even strength, they were 10-8-3.

Those are reasonable records for any other club, but when you consider the Canucks went 54-19-9, it suggests Vancouver struggled most against teams like the Bruins. Indeed, Boston won the only meeting of the regular season, 3-1 on Feb. 26.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Vancouver Canucks, NHL Talk, NHL Playoff Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Horton’s Goal Sends Bruins To The Stanley Cup Final

Great game 7, both Boston and Tampa left it all on the ice.

Here is the Horton goal with Bob Cole describing the play.

added 11:09pm, Game highlights can be viewed below…

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Open Post- Game 7, Lightning vs. Bruins

Winner moves on to face the Vancouver Canucks in the Stanley Cup Final.

Loser gets a well deserved pat on the back and isn’t heard from again until October.

Your thoughts and comments are encouraged. 

Puck drops around 8:10pm on VERSUS, CBC and RDS.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

You Never Know

Milan Lucic, Steven Stamkos, Mark Recchi and Dwayne Roloson talk about playing in game 7 tonight.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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