Wednesday night’s Game 1 was an incredible thriller. Can Game 2 live up to that hype or are we in store for a tighter game?
Game 2: Chicago Blackhawks host Boston Bruins (8 p.m. ET — NBCSN/Live Extra)
Chicago leads series 1-0
After the triple-overtime epic that was Game 1, the pressure is on the Boston Bruins to see if they can bounce back from such a tough loss. Unfortunately, they head into Game 2 with some looming questions.
The main worry is the health of Nathan Horton. The big forward left Game 1 with an apparent shoulder injury, one that’s reportedly nagged him all playoffs, but after practicing yesterday it looks like he could go. If his issue is a chronic dislocated shoulder, however, that could be a major problem as it can reoccur at any time. (Update: Horton will play Game 2)
That shifts the questions to the play of Tyler Seguin. Seguin has popped off a lot of shots in the postseason and has just one goal to his name. If he’s needed in a larger role tonight, can he be a difference maker? Boston might need him to be that no matter what.
This isn’t all about the Bruins, of course. After taking Game 1, Chicago seemed to be clicking pretty well. They dominated in puck possession and outshot the Bruins by a wide margin. Is there anything that really needs to be adjusted? Coach Joel Quenneville might tell you the power play could use work after it did a miserable job of generating scoring chances in Game 1.
The difference maker tonight, however, could be Corey Crawford who the Blackhawks couldn’t rave over hard enough after Game 1. Throw in captain Jonathan Toews’ endorsement for Crawford to be Team Canada’s goalie at the Olympics and it’s a full-on love fest in the Windy City.
This is where we remind you that Tuukka Rask has been equally outstanding for Boston and we should expect more of the same stellar goaltending we saw in Game 1 from both players.