With the Montreal Canadiens losing an overtime heartbreaker to the Boston Bruins in Game 4 of their second round series on Thursday, Michel Therrien isn't too worried about his team's play so far.
Matt Fraser scored 1:19 into the extra period as the Bruins grabbed a 1-0 win over Montreal in a game that saw both rivals evenly matched from the net out throughout the night.
"I like the way we're playing," Therrien told reporters on Friday morning as the series shifts back to Boston for Game 5. "Anything can happen in a best two-out-of-three situation. We're gaining confidence every game."
Playing in his first-ever playoff game, Fraser's heroics helped the Bruins even the set at two games apiece after the Bruins dropped a 4-2 decision on Tuesday. The Bruins had 35 shots on Carey Price compared to Montreal's 33 on Tuukka Rask.
While the shots and scoring chances were pretty much even, Therrien and his coaching staff drew considerable criticism for playing veteran blueliner Douglas Murray - who some pundits and fans thought could not handle the speed and puck-cycling game of the Bruins.
"They were physical, blocked shots and contained well," said Therrien of Murray and his defensive partner Mike Weaver. "(They) did a fantastic job for us."
Murray, who was signed as a free agent last summer, had a team-leading eleven hits in the Canadiens' two home games against the Bruins. "It's always been important for me to try to play physical but play clean and not take penalties," he told reporters on Friday.
"Anytime you get praise from the coach, it feels good."
The same couldn't be said for Montreal's go-to threesome of Max Pacioretty, David Desharnais and Thomas Vanek. The line was split up for much of the night, with Vanek playing alongside Tomas Plekanec. Pacioretty, who scored 39 goals during the regular season, has just one in the playoffs - the power play game-winner in Game 4 against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
"Some guys are having trouble contributing offensively," said Therrien. "They need to adjust to the intensity of the playoffs."
Game 5 is Saturday night in Boston.