Tag: Lightning-Bruins

Tim Thomas, Nathan Horton

How the Bruins, Canucks performed in previous Game 7’s in the 2011 playoffs

Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals is uncharted territory for these editions of the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks. It’s actually the first time the Bruins franchise has ever been in a Game 7 in the championship round while the Canucks hope to be more successful than the 1994 edition was against the New York Rangers.

That being said, both teams have already experienced Game 7 matches in earlier rounds of the 2011 playoffs, so it’s not like they’ll feel totally out of place on Wednesday night. Let’s take a look at how each team played in their Game 7 contests.

April 26, 2011 – Canucks beat Blackhawks 2-1 (OT)

Goal scorers: Jonathan Toews scored for Chicago; Alex Burrows scored both of Vancouver’s tallies.

Roberto Luongo’s performance: 31 out of 32 saves made.

Summary: Luongo came into this Game 7 with about as much pressure as a goalie could endure in a first round series. He responded brilliantly, making huge stop after huge stop although Toews beat him on what could have been a heart-breaking shorthanded goal in the waning moments of regulation. Burrows scored the early goal and then nearly became the goat by taking a penalty in overtime. He redeemed himself by scoring the game-winning goal by exploiting a Chris Campoli turnover.

Defining video

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

April 27, 2011 – Boston beats Montreal 4-3 (OT)

Goal scorers: Yannick Weber, Tomas Plekanec and P.K. Subban for Montreal; Johnny Boychuk, Mark Recchi, Chris Kelly and Nathan Horton for Boston.

Tim Thomas’ performance: Thomas stopped 34 out of 37 shots against the Habs.

Summary: The Bruins’ special teams flopped almost comically in this game, allowing two Montreal power play goals and a disturbing shorthanded tally by Plekanec. Boston made their bones through most of this year’s playoffs by playing great in 5-on-5 situations and this Game 7 was no exception. They stormed off to an early 2-0 lead before stumbling a bit, but didn’t allow stomach punching moments to derail their hard work. Thomas made 31 out of 31 saves and Boston out-scored Montreal 4-0 in even strength situations, including Horton’s bombastic overtime game-winner.

Defining video

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

May 27, 2011 – Bruins beat Lightning 1-0

Goal scorer: Nathan Horton for Boston

Tim Thomas’ performance: Thomas made 24 out of 24 saves for a shutout.

Summary: As phenomenal as Dwayne Roloson was (making 37 out of 38 saves), the Bruins finally played the suffocating defensive style that they rarely maintained against Tampa Bay for most of the series. Thomas earned his shutout while Horton scored the game’s only goal on a tip-in after being exonerated of water bottle-throwing charges (although he did face a $2,500 slap on the wrist fine for the infraction).

Defining video

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!


As you can see, both goalies have had a great Game 7 performance already in these playoffs. There’s evidence that Luongo can bounce back from embarrassing moments but there is also proof that Thomas can close out an opponent even amid in-game setbacks. Each team won those games at home, though, so the Bruins will have to break that trend by winning Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals on the road (and become one of the few in NHL history to do so in the process).

Video: Highlights from Dwayne Roloson’s 37-save performance in Game 7 defeat

Dwayne Roloson, Mark Recchi

Before narrowly losing Friday’s Game 7 against the Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Dwayne Roloson produced a stunning 7-0 record in elimination games in his career. Let’s face it, though; Roloson wasn’t particularly great in his most recent win, allowing four goals on 20 shots in the a 5-4 Lightning win. He really wasn’t fantastic in the first five game he started in this series, either, allowing 15 goals in five starts while being pulled from two of those contests.

As shaky as Roloson was in those first five games, he made up for it in Game 7, even though Tampa Bay fell 1-0. He kept the score at 0-0 after facing 29 shots through the first two periods and stopped eight more in the final frame, but he did allow the game-winning goal by Nathan Horton. Then again, that goal took place on a 2-on-1 in which David Krejci sent a nice one-timer pass to Horton for the tap-in. Roloson was left on an island on that play – and unlike the other times he bailed out his team – he finally succumbed to the Bruins pressure.

Every now and then, goalies receive acclaim for superlative performances even if they fall short of a win. Ron Hextall and Jean-Sebastien Giguere won the Conn Smythe trophy after falling short of Stanley Cup victories. Ron Tugnutt was serenaded by Boston Bruins fans after he made 70 saves to secure a tie for the Quebec Nordiques. Roloson’s effort in defeat probably won’t be remembered on the same level as those historic examples, but his great saves deserve at least some attention. Hopefully this post can serve as a decent tribute to his outstanding performance. (Especially since it could be his last, considering he’s 41 years old.)

Let’s take a look at some of his best moments from that game.

Roloson stops Milan Lucic’s breakaway attempt, which ranked as the first great chance of the game.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Horton scored the game-winning goal, but Roloson stopped him on five other shots.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Call it old-on-old crime if you’d like: 41-year-old Roloson shuts down 43-year-old Mark Recchi twice.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Want to see more from Friday’s game? Check out the top highlights from Game 7 in the video below.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Video: Zdeno Chara puts his own spin on accepting the Prince of Wales Trophy

Tampa Bay Lightning v Boston Bruins - Game Seven

When the Boston Bruins managed to protect their 1-0 lead and win Game 7 against the Tampa Bay Lightning, many shifted their thoughts to their matchup against the Vancouver Canucks. Yet after they finished the time-honored tradition of the post-series handshakes,* a subset of the hockey public wondered: would Bruins captain Zdeno Chara touch the Prince of Wales Trophy?

In case you aren’t aware, many players are superstitious when it comes to touching the conference championship trophies. The gesture is obviously made to signify the belief that the ultimate goal is still four wins away.

Still, many captains decide to touch the trophies anyway. This post points out the fact that captains who touched one of the conference trophies are 4-5 since 2001, then polled PHT readers to see if they believe captains should touch the trophies. (A little under 52 percent said “No.”)

At first, it seemed like Chara would go the predictable route and not touch the Prince of Wales trophy. Chara did refrain from touching it, but he put his own spin on the ceremony by inviting his teammates over to pose around it. One might say that Chara channeled his inner Mike Eruzione in that moment, albeit on a much smaller scale.

(Eruzione – captain of the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” U.S. Olympic team – invited his teammates to cram on a podium intended for one person during the gold medal ceremony.)

It’s probably a stretch to say that Chara made an homage to that moment, but either way, it was an interesting twist on a rather silly tradition. Both Chara and Vancouver Canucks captain Henrik Sedin refrained from touching the respective trophies this year, so the record will stay at 4-5 for another year.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

* The most emotional moment there likely belonged to Tim Thomas and Martin St. Louis, who were college teammates at the University of Vermont.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!