Ian Clark's On Hockey: Bruin’s look to follow up on stellar effort
It was a supremely disciplined and structured performance Monday night that earned the B’s a 2-0 win over the Blackhawks and a 2-1 advantage in the series. Game 4 is tonight in Boston, and if the teams perform again the way they did in Game 3, the Bruins won’t just have the Blackhawks on the brink; they’ll have them over the edge and clinging by their gloved fingertips.
“They’re three games away from winning the Cup, so all we’ve done is put ourselves in a better situation than we were in the previous game,” said Bruins forward Chris Kelly, suddenly a force in the Final after previously being all but invisible in this postseason. “They’re a great hockey team.”
“I'm not one to say momentum. (Game 3) is over,” Julien said. “I think the next game is just as important. We have to go into the next game the same way we did (Game 3). If you don’t win that game, does that mean the momentum goes the other way? I know it gives them home‑ice advantage again.
Boston won 40 of 56 faceoffs in the game, repeatedly preventing Chicago from setting up any kind of offense. And when the Hawks did have the puck, gaining the offensive zone became a chore as the Bruins played a smart and aggressive style.
“I think they were just keen on us bobbling pucks here and there and not making crisp passes. They were coming at us, and we didn’t have full possession,” said Blackhawks forward Jonathan Toews, otherwise silenced by the man he beat out for the Selke Trophy (presented to the player deemed the NHL’s best defensive forward), Patrice Bergeron.
“We expected it to be a tough atmosphere. We expected Boston to be flying out there, and they were,” Toews said.
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