Sun, 20 Sep 2020

Bruins look to ride momentum in back-to-back vs. 'Canes

Field Level Media
13 Aug 2020, 07:40 GMT+10

Now that the Boston Bruins have finally started clicking in this August portion of the season, they want to keep the accelerator on the floor.

To that end, they'll get a quick turnaround in their first-round series with the Carolina Hurricanes.

After Boston won the series opener in double overtime Wednesday, the puck will drop for Game 2 on Thursday night at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.

"I think we were more engaged in the game," said Bruins center Patrice Bergeron, who scored the game winner 1:13 into the second overtime, comparing it to three losses in round-robin seeding games. "We're getting better from one game to the next. We have to keep doing that."

The Hurricanes entered the game 3-0 since the restart after sweeping the New York Rangers in a qualifying series. They'll look to regain some of the crispness that had earlier in the month.

"There can be a lot of excuses you can bring up," Carolina captain Jordan Staal said of Game 1 vs. Boston. "As a group, we didn't love our effort. ... We have to do better, if we want to beat the best."

Bergeron provided his fourth career playoff overtime goal for the 4-3 victory.

Boston coach Bruce Cassidy said a certain trait emerged with his team.

"These guys are battle-tested," he said.

The beginning of the series schedule was revamped, with the Bruins and Hurricanes opening play at 11 a.m. Wednesday after Tuesday night's scheduled matchup was postponed when a preceding game between Columbus and Tampa Bay went into five overtimes.

"We've battled through worse," Staal said. "We have a group that battles through adversity and enjoys that challenge."

Boston controlled stretches of Wednesday's game, with Carolina not getting untracked often enough.

"It's obviously a stinger. I was afraid we were going to be a little sluggish, and we were," said Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour, whose team had seven days off before Game 1. "It's to their credit, they played a little better than us. ... We'll come out with a little better effort, I think, and try to shore up a few things."

The rapid-fire nature of the revised slate might work out for Carolina, however.

"You don't want to marinate on it too long," Brind'Amour said. "We get the chance to come back and play right away. I think that's good."

Game 1 marked the sixth-longest playoff game in Carolina franchise history. Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin logged more than 37 minutes to top all skaters, while defenseman Charlie McAvoy led the Bruins in ice time with 33:45.

The Hurricanes will aim for adjustments.

"Our style is a forechecking team and playing in their end," Staal said. "They did that to us and you could tell that started wearing on us."

Hurricanes forward Brock McGinn said: "The way we get shots on net is just playing our style of game. We just have to take some things from this game and move on and go to the next one. ... (With games on back-to-back days) gets it out of our mind that much quicker and don't have to spend that extra day dwelling on the loss."

Brind'Amour said that forward Justin Williams, a playoff veteran, could be back in the lineup for Game 2 after sitting out the series opener with an undisclosed ailment. It's also possible that defenseman Sami Vatanen is in the lineup.

Boston went 0-for-4 on power plays, including one in overtime, in Game 1. That puts the Bruins at 0-for-13 in power plays this month in Toronto games.

"Our power play is still a work in progress," Cassidy said.

--Field Level Media

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