The Los Angeles Kings avoided falling behind 3-0 in the Western Conference finals. Now the Pittsburgh Penguins will try to do the same…
Boston Bruins host Pittsburgh Penguins (8:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN/Live Extra)
Boston leads 2-0
With all the focus on what’s gone wrong for the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Boston Bruins are perhaps not getting enough credit for their accomplishments. They’ve taken one of the most loaded teams in recent memory and made them look silly.
If Pittsburgh’s strategy was to overwhelm the Bruins offensively, so far it’s failed spectacularly. Boston’s defense has risen to the task and Tuukka Rask has been nearly flawless so far.
Still, Boston hasn’t won this series yet and Bruins coach Claude Julien understands that this would be a terrible time for his squad to feel content.
“Our team is really playing good hockey right now, without a doubt the best we’ve had this year, and that has to continue to beat these guys,” Julien said, according to the Ottawa Sun. “We were in the same position as Pittsburgh a few years ago and we worked our way back.
“I think we understand the situation here. We’re not going to get ahead of ourselves and understand these next games are crucial for us.”
“These next games will be a lot tougher I’m sure,” Boston’s Shawn Thornton added. “These guys are a very dangerous team.”
For Pittsburgh, there are any number of adjustments they might make, but perhaps the most useful ones would be mental. After suffering a 6-1 loss on Monday, Penguins coach Dan Bylsma talked about the Penguins’ need to adjust their attitude. Although he didn’t go into detail, that likely speaks to competitiveness and patience, but also not getting scared or frustrated.
“Maybe after that first game, we played Game 2 scared to lose instead of trying to win it,” Pittsburgh forward Brenden Morrow told the McKeesport Daily News. “We were slow to pucks all night, and that’s why. We were doing too much thinking. We can’t do that again.”
We’ll see if the Penguins can enter this game with renewed focus or if the Bruins can push their backs against the wall.