Let’s not get bogged down in details here. No need to do a play-by-play of what was hands down the best game of the NHL playoffs so far. Last night was a prime example of everything Bruins hockey should be… you know, minus the defensive mistakes. Once again Boston went down 2-0 to the “impenetrable” Ryan Miller but in the third period they found ways to… penetrate… him?
David Krejci made a superb (say it again…) effort to get to a puck for the Bruins first goal and then Patrice Beeeeeeeeeeergeron took a page from his buddy Sidney Crosby’s book and took an odd angle shot through Ryan Miller’s five hole to tie the game. One overtime wasn’t enough for these scrappy teams. No, they wanted to keep playing. They went to a second overtime, battering and bruising each other, exchanging end-to-end rushes in a game that defined what hockey is all about. They exchanged a total of 95 hits through almost 5 periods of hockey.
But then in the second overtime, Buffalo took Craig Rivet’s favorite penalty when they had too many men on the ice. And for the second time that night Boston’s “inefficient” power play went to work again from a not so unlikely hero. Miroslav Satan was an under the radar signing by Mr. Chiarelli. He didn’t post big numbers but he often had a flare for the dramatic in his short tenure with the Bruins and last night was no different. Michael Ryder found Satan in the slot. Satan deked to the left to draw Miller and then shot the puck through a couple of Buffalo defender’s legs, knowing Miller would have a hard time getting to it. The red light went on and suddenly the Bruins were up 3-1 in the series.
It can be argued that perhaps Buffalo is just a good match-up for the Bruins. They don’t score much either and they have injuries to deal with themselves. But the Bruins are grinding out wins, earning confidence and should they win just one game in the next three, re-enforcements are coming. Don’t get cocky Bruins fans… but allow yourself to hope. Rask is tighter than a virgin on prom night. Boychuk breaks souls. Bergeron refuses to lose. The Bruins are finally a “team” again. There are more tests ahead, but this fiesty bunch has a chance. And if all else fails… just beat up Craig Rivet again.