NHL Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins Quarterfinal Notes: Chapter 1

Boston Bruins Quarterfinal Notes will take a look at the most recent playoff game, developments since the final horn and a glance ahead to the next game–basically, a rundown of the things you need to know before the next puck drop. Chapter 1 focuses on the first game of the quarterfinals against the Toronto Maple Leafs and a look ahead to game two.

The Bruins kicked off their playoffs with a bang, grabbing a 4-1 win on Wednesday night. One thing that actually bothered me a lot more upon rewatching the game (check out NHL Network the next day!) was just how many times Bruins goals were placed under review.

Two of them–from the sticks of Tyler Seguin and Patrice Bergeron–were both waved off, and while Seguin’s goal was definitely not one, Bergeron’s seemed more legitimate. Nathan Horton‘s and Johnny Boychuk‘s goals were also examined before being declared legit. Basically, only Wade Redden and David Krejci were spared the momentum killer that is the sight of zebras swarming in their consultation area to talk with the war room in Toronto.

Here’s hoping this is just an aberration, much like how Bergeron took two different penalties and then got robbed of a goal while Tyler Bozak figured the best faceoff strategy against 37 is to just get him kicked out of the draw. If you can’t beat them, get them changed out, eh Bozak?

Andrew Ference was suspended a game for his check to the head on Mikhail Grabovski, though no penalty was called at the time and Grabovski was okay enough to keep playing the rest of the game–and get upended on a huge Boychuk hit later on, though he was fine after that too. Ference is a repeat offender, though. So with 21 out, what are the Bruins going to do about defense tomorrow night to close the one-game gap?

There are a few options, but the only one that really sounds appetizing at all to me right now is Dougie Hamilton. He definitely has postseason experience, though on a junior level. He’s always dreamed of playing in the big show playoffs, though, and has been working hard to be ready for the chance since he was a healthy scratch for game one.

Speaking of healthy scratches, game one healthy scratch Rich Peverley could be back in tomorrow night. He was wearing gray at today’s practice while Kaspars Daugavins was sent down to the green line. Coach Claude Julien has always expected Peverley to see postseason time, too, so I’m thinking 16 will be on the ninth floor of TD Garden tomorrow night while 49 is down on the ice.

Also, if I may diverge for a moment, what’s up with playoff opponents’ willingness to spear Brad Marchand in the gentlemen’s area? It happened last April and it happened again in game one!

Going into game two, the Leafs are bound to try to have a better showing. They’ll try to play more aggressively, more physically and try to make Tuukka Rask‘s life hard. So, it’s the Bruins’ job to beat the Leafs at whatever game they decide to play, even if it is merely a facsimile of the Boston game. See what will happen at 7 p.m. on Saturday.