Bruins and Toronto tied at a game apiece heading north of the border
The Boston Bruins entered the postseason the fourth ranked team in the Eastern Conference with a first round matchup against the No. 5 ranked Toronto Maple Leafs. The Bruins won game one to take a 1-0 series lead and on Saturday played game 2 at home.
A win would have given the Bruins a 2-0 lead heading to Toronto, but Boston struggled to find rhythm and momentum and Toronto was able to pull off an upset and take game 2 by the score of 4-2.
On Monday night, the series will continue in Toronto at the Air Canada Centre. It was shocking to many who watched both games to see how well Boston played in game 1 in their 4-1 win Wednesday and then turn around and play so poorly in game 2.
Dennis Seidenberg, a defenseman for the Bruins summed it up best by saying he and his teammates lost track of the things they did so well in the victory in game 1. He said the team did not continue its momentum from the first game.
Toronto changed the tempo of the game on Saturday as they moved and passed the puck in a much more efficient and effective way. Toronto maintained control of the puck more often and did not turn it over as often as they did in game 1.
Both teams are very fast and physical with the team making the most adjustments during the series will come out victorious and that was evident in the adjustments the Maple Leafs made to turn a 4-1 game 1 loss into a 4-2 game 2 victory.
The Bruins did not play as an effective physical game in game 2 as they did in game 1, while the Maple Leafs hit back and the Bruins were taken off their game.
On defense, the Bruins had a number of breakdowns and that resulted in the Maple Leafs having odd man rushes in their favor.
The Maple Leafs also kept the Bruins momentum in check early by fore checking after being able to dump pucks deep into the Boston end. That helped contain the breakout for Boston, which had proved so strong in game 1.
Boston had to play game 2 without the services of Andrew Ference, who had to serve a suspension of one game for an illegal hit on Mikhail Grabovski of the Leafs in game 1.
Penalties also hurt the Bruins in game 2. Toronto had just one penalty in the game until Mark Fraser had a fight with Boston’s Shawn Thornton with only a second left in regulation, while the Bruins spend a number of minutes in the game shorthanded. With all the penalty killing the Bruins had to do, they were not able to get the four lines flowing in the game.
Game 3 will be very important for the Bruins to show they can bounce back from a poor showing in game 2. Toronto on the other hand will look to take advantage of their home ice and take a 2-1 lead in the series with a win in Monday’s game 3.