The end to these Stanley Cup playoffs is near. However, it probably feels so far away to the two remaining teams.
The Chicago Blackhawks have a chance to go up 2-0 on the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final, needing a win Saturday night in order to do so. The Bruins will look to even the best-of-seven series.
But this will mark another difficult test for both teams, after that dazzling display of hockey in Game 1, which the Blackhawks eventually won in the third overtime.
It was the marathon game within the sprint that is the post-season. After two fulls days off, and some much needed rest, it’s back to the highly emotional grind.
Experience at this time of year counts for something, and both teams – the Blackhawks winners of the Stanley Cup in 2010 and the Bruins in 2011 – have plenty of that.
“The process, it’s a fun process to go through, but you experience some different feelings along the way,” Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville told reporters prior to Game 2 of the final.
“Our locker room has been pretty even-keeled all year long. Our guys have won and know what it is to win. They can help share their experiences with the guys that are looking to get there for the first time.
“I think Boston, they got a lot more guys that are familiar with what it takes as well. But I just think I commend the guys for how they’re
looking forward, don’t get too high, too low.”