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McKenzie: Chara against the Sedins will be crucial matchup

Bob McKenzie
5/29/2011 12:45:35 AM
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Some thoughts from the NHL on TSN panel on Saturday night:

What do I expect from the Sedins? The answer to that would be Zdeno Chara. The Sedins have faced some big name defencemen in the playoffs like Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook in Chicago, Shea Weber on Nashville, and then against San Jose - they don't have a dominant defenceman like Chara and the Sedins ran wild.

It's going to be interesting - Chara and Dennis Seidenberg up against the Sedins who unquestionably picked up their confidence level against the Sharks. This is going to be a crucial matchup.

Obviously the first two games in Vancouver, Boston doesn't get the last change but Claude Julien is a line-matching coach and he knows how to get a defence pair out against the Sedins and Alex Burrows.

Chara has the ability to take games and dominate defensively. I know on March 26, with a month left in the regular season, Boston went into Vancouver on a Saturday night, won the game 3-1 on an empty net goal, and proved that they can play with the Canucks. And a big part of that formula is going to be Chara being dominant defensively.

Canucks hold a major edge on the power play

I cannot believe that the Bruins are in the Stanley Cup Final with a power play clicking at about eight percent efficiency. They have scored only five power play goals in the entire playoffs thus far. By contrast, the Canucks have 17 power play goals.

I've got to believe this is a huge edge for Vancouver, and if Boston doesn't find a way to elevate their power play a little bit, I think they're going to be in a little bit of trouble. But stranger things have happened, and big Chara could be down in front of Roberto Luongo playing the Dustin Byfuglien role so we'll see how that goes.

Bob McKenzie

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