Monday night madness took place inside the city of Boston. Rather than college basketball getting the favourable push in sport highlight packages, the beginning of the week signaled an important game in the NHL to take place between the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs and the hometown Boston Bruins.
The Bruins and the Leafs were playing the second game in their home and home series. Coming into the Boston TD Bank Garden the Leafs had just gotten the monkey off their backs when they beat the Bruins in game one of this series. With Toronto’s victory over Boston on Saturday it erased nearly a two year drought in gaining a win over the old rivals.
Now the pressure was off Toronto as far as getting a win over Boston was concerned. The question being asked by reporters going into the second game was how would the boys of Beantown respond? The Leafs knew that playing Boston twice within 48 hours would be a tough test. One thing that great hockey rivalries offer the fans of the game is that a team’s competitive level is raised.
That is the formula the special interest games are made of because it’s just another chapter written to hockey’s greatest rivalries. Toronto and Boston gave fans plenty of back and forth action that would leave any true fans on the edge of their seat.
The game was competitive. In fact, the game was so close they needed a shootout to decide who would walk away the victor. Toronto has not had the best of luck in shootouts this season. The Leafs are win less in the skills competition going 0-3. Unfortunately, the Leafs were defeated in the shootout as Nikolai Kulemin was denied by Bruin net minder Tukka Rask.