Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bill Simmons at ESPN Page 2,
Look, sometimes a sport can just evolve in the wrong direction. It happened to tennis, it happened to pro wrestling and it definitely happened to hockey. This was a sport that thrived on rivalries and feuds—Montreal and Boston, the Rangers and Islanders, Philly and Washington, Montreal and Toronto, Montreal and Quebec, Montreal and everybody—so by moving key franchises and adding too many other ones, fundamentally, they were killing the one thing that made the sport so great. As a Boston fan, how am I supposed to get fired up during the regular season for a steady stream of Nashville, Columbus, Carolina and Anaheim? It’s insane. It’s illogical. Hockey should never have more than 22 teams, and half those teams should be playing in Canada, where it’s the national sport and the citizens truly care about the game.
before you come to a conclusion, keep reading...
From Tim Wharnsby at the Globe & Mail,
All eyes will be focused on rookie Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price and how he deals with the pressure cooker of a game seven in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Price has been coddled by the Canadiens since he gave up five more goals in Montreal’s wild 5-4 loss to the Boston Bruins in game six on Saturday evening. He wasn’t made available for interviews yesterday and again this morning after the Canadiens skate.
Did this maneuvre to shield him only add to the anxiety he’s already experiencing in the hours leading up to tonight’s elimination game?
via Spector at the Soapbox section of Spector’s Hockey,
Why the Bruins will win: The momentum and confidence is now fully on their side and all the pressure is now on the Habs at home. They’ve outworked the Canadiens in nearly every game in this series and will continue doing so. Appear to have gotten to Habs goalie Carey Price, while Tim Thomas will play well between the Bruins pipes.
Why the Canadiens will win: They should get a confidence boost from the rabid hometown crowd. Their young scorers finally came through in Game 6 and should follow it up in Game Seven. The coaching staff will stress out-working the Bruins, including making the physical sacrifices to make the plays that win playoff games. Carey Price will again stand tall in goal.
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
For the Canadiens, tonight will be the first time they face a possible season-ender. The Bruins, however, have been fighting to extend their season for quite some time….
Montreal swaggered into the series with all the confidence expected of a club that had claimed all eight meetings with the Bruins this season. Their chests ballooned even bigger when they took Games 1 and 2 at the Bell Centre, riding hotshot goalie Carey Price and the stick of world-class talent Alex Kovalev, who netted a seemingly back-snapping overtime goal to give Montreal a 2-0 series lead.
But four games later, Montreal looks like a broken team that’s staggering at the wrong time.
Elliotte Friedman of HNIC mentioned on the pre-game of the Sharks/Flames game that Patrice Bergeron will see a doctor tomorrow morning and if the doc gives the go-ahead, Bergeron will play tomorrow night for the Bruins against Montreal.
The Bruins have been playing for Begeron in this series and if he does come back tomorrow, it could be a huge, emotional factor for the Bruins.
from Scott Morrison at his Viewpoint Blog at CBC,
Funny, but wasn’t this the kind of scenario supporters of the Montreal Canadiens had always worried about…
- Having a rookie goaltender and dealing with the pressure of the playoffs. After giving up five goals in the first four games of the series, Carey Price has now been beaten five times on consecutive nights by the Boston Bruins, though he was hardly solely to blame for the latest defensive collapse.
Included in that total, was in each of the past two games, with a chance to put the Bruins out of their misery, the Canadiens gave up four goals in both third periods. Not good.
from the 2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Blog at CBC,
And then there was one.
One game nobody believed would ever happen. One game where this extraordinary Boston Bruins hockey season orchestrated by head coach Claude Julien can maybe continue into the second round of the NHL playoffs.
One game where the Montreal Canadiens’ “dream season,” as it was described by coach Guy Carbonneau, can come to a crashing, devastating halt.
That game will come Monday night at the Bell Centre, as the Canadiens and Bruins will play an improbable Game 7 in this series that has featured just about anything anyone can want out of playoff hockey.
How does that game grab you (NHL box score) hockey fans?
Six goals in the 3rd, five in a little over 7 minutes!
Bruins force a game 7 against Montreal with a 5-4 victory.
And for all of those supposed fans that can’t find Versus, you lost out, big time!
added 10:09pm, from Kevin Mio at Habs Inside/Out,
For their first time in their history, the Boston Bruins have forced a Game 7 after trailing a series 3-1 after the defeated the Canadiens 5-4 in Game 6 on Saturday night in Boston.
For the second straight game, the Bruins have scored five goals against the Canadiens and rookie goaltender Carey Price.
from Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette,
I believe Guy Carbonneau when he says he has no hesitation coming back with Price, that he’s confident the 20-year-old will find his game again.
On his part, Price told reporters after the game: “I won’t think about it again after I leave this dressing room.”
Hmph! It could be Price is strong enough to block it from his mind, which would be the right thing to do, but you can be sure Boston fans will be reminding him about the meltdown tonight.
Want more Canadiens coverage? Check out Habs Inside/Out...
from the Worcester Telegram & Gazette,
While everyone else is enjoying balmy temperatures near 80 degrees, the Bruins are trying to prolong their winter and force that seventh and deciding game on Monday up in the Great White North. To do so, they’ll have to weather what is expected to be another frenzied start by a raw-meat-eating Montreal team that’s averaging an incredible 35.6 hits a game (to Boston’s 29.0).
“We know they’re going to come hard,” said center Glen Metropolit, who potted the game-winner in Thursday night’s stunning 5-1 rout of the Canadiens at the Bell Centre.
“We’ve got to have a better first (period) than we did (Thursday) night. The first five minutes set the tone.”
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 firstname.lastname@example.org