NHL

McKenzie: It was gut-check time for the Bruins

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Bob McKenzie
4/28/2011 12:59:48 AM
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Some thoughts from the NHL on TSN panel on Wednesday night:

Wednesday night was gut-check time for a Boston Bruins franchise that had known nothing but failure dating back to last season and their total collapse against Philadelphia.

But even more than that; in four straight Game 7's before this year (over a six year period), the Bruins came up empty in each deciding game.

They finally got it done, and it was ironic that Nathan Horton was the guy that scored the goal.  Horton had two game-winning goals in the series and they were both in overtime.

As well as Horton has played at times this season for the Bruins, his line with David Krejci and Milan Lucic was probably the least effective of the offensive lines on Wednesday.   

While Mark Recchi, Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand were good, I thought the best line was Chris Kelly playing with Michael Ryder and Rich Peverley

Not Enough for Montreal

I think that the injuries on defence really affected Montreal.

James Wisniewski and Hal Gill have been hurting, causing Roman Hamrlik and Jaroslav Spacek to play more minutes than the Habs would have ideally needed them to, causing Montreal to get stretched a little thin there.

Still though, as a five-on-five team in Game 7, their big players - Scott Gomez, Brian Gionta and Michael Cammalleri - were minus-3 while the Habs' top four defencemen were all minus-2 on the night.

Suffice to say, there is work to be done in Montreal before next season starts.

Chris Kelly (Photo: Damian Strohmeyer /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Damian Strohmeyer /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images)
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