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Five Years Ago Today: The Bruins fight back in Game 3.

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Half a decade ago, the Bruins were poked, and as we all well know, you NEVER do that.

New York Times

Okay, so let's go into the collective mindset of the Boston Bruins half a decade ago today.

You've been heartbroken twice in a row. Once because your surprisingly good offense has been stalled out once, and the second one was because an OT you'd been fighting for all game was pissed away in 11 seconds. You've fought like hell to get to where you are including having to fight tooth and nail against your rival, and now you've been stuck in a 2-0 series hole.

What do you do? You're taking on one of the best teams in the entire league whose been steamrolling nearly everybody to get to where they are. What can you do?

Simple.

You bite back.

HARD.

The first period of game 2 was everything you needed such a game to be if it had to have no score. Plenty of weird insane chances that both Bobby Lu and Tim Thomas were scrambling to stop. More than anything, the Bruins imposed their will and hemmed the Canucks back into their own end more times than Vancouver would like to have admitted.


Unfortunately, it would also mean the Canucks were starting to resort to...less than reputable tactics to settle their differences. Plenty of dumb penalties, multiple scrums after the play, the works as both teams began to bristle.
And then disaster struck.

This hit was hot, burning garbage and Horton looked like he'd been shot. He probably felt like he had been. He hit the ice in the worst possible way. And he had to be stretchered away.
And that was the moment where the Bruins were well and truely poked. And the Canucks found themselves completely unable to stop it.
The second period of the game was the stuff of legends, as four individual Bruins tallied goals one right after the other. The Bruins took control of a fantastically timed, "Couldn't set it if you tried" broken stick on the part of Edler and immediately swarmed Luongo, giving Andrew Ference the opportunity to put the good guys up 1-0.

The Canucks began to hemorrhage penalty minutes, making the kind of boneheaded decisions a john tortorella team might. (And only a few years before the Canucks would become a john tortorella bonehead team!) Shawn Thornton would draw one such penalty and the Bruins would immediately capitalize, bringing a "tip-in" from Marc Recchi's stick onto Ryan Keslers and it's 2-0. After Lucic took a penalty, the PK of the 2011 Bruins found an opening, and where there's an opportunity to score, Brad Marchand is there. 3-0 after a juking of Luongo's entire being. Body, soul, mind. You name it, Brad Marchand juked it. And it wouldn't even consider stopping. Four minutes later? Michael Ryder would take a shot that would become an almost perfect rebound for David Krejci to pot him for a 4-0 domination in the second period.

AND WE'RE NOT EVEN DONE!

The third period was more of a symbolic gesture. The Canucks offered feeble resistance in a single goal from Jannik Hansen, the Bruins just dumped more fantastic play on the hapless president's trophy winners. Recchi got his second, Daniel Paille got himself a fantastic goal under pressure, Chris Kelly and Daniel Paille ended up putting together a fantastic behind the net sequence to get Kelly a goal, and Michael Ryder finished it off.

That isn't what you remember from it, though. The domination was good, but the way the Bruins got so deep inside the Canucks' heads on the other hand...That you remember. Dennis Seidenberg, Shawn Thornton, Milan Lucic, Zdeno Chara, all thundering individual Canucks and being right in the thick of burrowing deep inside Alain Vigneault's team psyche.

And of course, Tim Thomas running a Sedin over like a mac truck never gets old.

This would be the turnaround point the Bruins needed in order to really get into the series, but they'd need a day's rest to heal the wounds and really get back on track. And some days later, they did just that.

But that's another story.