That could be just a fluke.
Who cares? They still won.
Yeah, on the third time it is becoming a trend.
Call me a cynic if you would like, I cannot necessarily deny that fact, but following the Boston Bruins’ 4-3 triple overtime loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final earlier this week, that makes three games in a row the Bruins have gone back to their pace of play from their lackadaisical regular season and been outplayed by their opponents.
With the puck dropping on Game 2 in just a few hours, the question becomes just how much concern should there be in regards to the Boston Bruins?
It is, after all, just one game. And for as bad as the Bruins looked at times during Game 1, it still took nearly two games for the Blackhawks to get one win. Not to mention the fact the game-tying and game-winning goals needed to take strange bounces in order to get behind netminder Tuukka Rask.
There is not much shame in losing a triple overtime game on such a goal. The shame comes in the question of whether or not it should have even gotten to that point?
Though they were not the better team in regulation, twice the Bruins had two-goal advantages and squandered them both, one coming in the third period. Then, when they were finally playing like the better team during the overtime periods, they could not take advantage of any of their opportunities to take a series lead.
It is not just the time of year for those kinds of lapses.
This is not 2011 and these are not the Vancouver Canucks. Logic would dictate the Bruins needed a split in the first two games in Chicago to have a good shot at the Cup. They threw that away when they let Game 1 slip through their fingers. The Bruins, however, are a strong enough team mentally that this loss should not rattle them. The potential of a rebound and a split of the games in Chicago still exists, but their play was going south before Andrew Shaw’s seeing-eye tally in the wee-hours of Thursday morning.
The question of whether or not it is time for the Black-and-Gold faithful to grow concerned and begin to panic with the Bruins trailing in a series for the first time this postseason is more of a personal choice. The bigger question heading into Game 2 is what 18 skaters will be pulling on sweaters for the game this evening?
Has the clock finally run out on Krug, the Cinderella of the Bruins’ postseason ball, who was finally exposed as the rookie defenseman that he is in Game 1?
(Maybe, but give him one more game.)
Will Nathan Horton play despite the supposed shoulder injury that has been nagging him all postseason and was finally made public when aggravated late in Game 1?
(I say probably.)
If he cannot go, who will take his place on the Bruins top line with David Krejci and Milan Lucic?
Who will fill the spot if Horton does not dress?
(I am tempted to go with Jay Pandolfo. Safer money is probably on Jordan Caron.)
Will head coach Claude Julien be able to roll his four lines given a potential absence of Horton and a rusty set of legs in the lineup?
(I see him actually tightening the reigns.)
Maybe it is not time to get concerned and worry just yet, but the Bruins have left the pundits with plenty of questions early in the Cup Final and it is certainly time for the trends to start going in the upward direction.
About the Author
Written by Matt Preston
I'm no Heminway or Haggerty, but keeping the dream alive, even if I'm pretty sure my Nana is my only follower. Self-deprecation is key, grammar is optional.