The Stanley Cup passes through Boston.
The Bruins won this difference in home-ice ranking with their statement winning the 7th win over Maple Leafs on Tuesday night. Now they hope to take advantage of the golden opportunity after all four winners of the regular season were interrupted in the first round.
Do not be fooled. Bruins will have full hands against John Tortorela's Columbus Blue Jax. The second round of Boston's opponents is interrupted by Tampa Bay Lightning's historic rise to the first rounds.
Over the last few weeks of the regular season, Bruins and Blue Jackets have often come together. Bruce Cassidy's group won two wins in a three-week period against Sergey Bobrovski, Artemis Panarin and a solid team at Columbus.
"At first I thought they were a really good team because I thought Tampa was off and we saw them first hand late last year. So it's clear that we have full hands, "Cassidy said after winning Toronto.
"The good news is we saw them three times a year. This will help with our preparation. You have to help with the players. We know they were physically against Tampa. They came after them. They have key savings. Their power play was light. So, we have full hands.
Bruins has a quick turnaround from the 7th victory over Maple Leafs for their first game on Thursday with Blue Jackets, who last picked up the ice a week before Tuesday. Let's divide a few keys to Bruins' victory.
Deposits have to be carried over.
Suspension of Nash Cadri's crossover check on Jake DeBrush in Game 2 put Mike Babcock in a tough spot. The coach in Toronto had to move William Nilander from his usual place with Austin Matthews and as Cadri's center.
Trevor Moore and Tyler Ennis had their skates on the fourth row. But Bruins revealed Leafs' six questions, especially in Game 7.
Joakim Nordstrom and Marcus Johansson gave Bruins an elevator with their first period. Sean Kurali, who played only in his third straight game, at the start of the third, after the Leafs dominated in the middle of the 20th.
Everything approached the third and fourth lines one night when Boston's top boys could not find the result of the result of the empty empty pool of Patrice Bergeron. But they may not have the same luxury below-six to head to Round 2.
– Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) April 24, 2019
Blue Jackets have a combination of speed, skill and energy players that occupy the third and fourth lines. Boone Jenner, Nick Foligno and Branden Dubinski are all playoff veterans who can move up and down. Josh Anderson's sharp combination of strength and speed on the third line would have made him a good sixteenth for each team. And former Bruin Riley Nash, despite the decline in production since his last year in Boston, is still a reliable two-way tooth.
Boston's bottom six had some moving parts during the Round 1. David Beck and Chris Wagner saw the time in the series just to get on stage in favor of Northstrom and the rookie Carson Kuhlman. Both are likely to watch the press again, avoiding injuries.
Yes, Bruins needs their best players to shine in Round 2. They were not exactly sharp on the Maple Leafs, but the unlikely characters in Game 7 helped them out for the most part.
Kurali (playing against their home team in the 2nd round), Nordström, Kulman, Jonason, Charlie Coyle and Noel Acharyi will not be easy with Columbus Three and Four. But they have their efforts to play 7 to continue, and Bruins may need that with a quick turnaround.
Take David Pastrank
– Marina Molnar (@mkmolnar) April 18, 2019
Bruins and Leafs used the heaviest charts for the first few games. This changed into game 4 when Cassidy moved David Pastrank to second line with Jake DeBrusk and David Krejci.
The talented fifth year ahead did not have the best times against Toronto this time. But the move paid off at the 4th meeting when Pastrank, who took advantage of Nikki Zaytsev-Jake Masin's physical pairing, scored only two goals in the series.
Cassidy and the company needed similar exits as game 4 of their dynamic Czech playmaker against Columbus's solid defense. Seth Jones and Zack Veranski are among the best two-way pairs in the league. Shooting David Savardt with Scott Harrington and staying at Adam Klinging's home provide the depths of the second and third defensive pairs in place of the injured Adam McCready, Ryan Murray and Marcus Nutivava.
Blue Jackets have a dedicated team to work with Maple Leafs. Toronto's criminal assassination focused mainly on the rejection of Pastrnak's patented place for a simultaneous stay at the left. Bruins' game of play has adapted in Game 6, but there is no doubt they will want to use this game again – along with putting Bergeron off the bumper – in the 2nd round.
Leafs pulled Pastrnak a little earlier in the first round. He struggled with his struggle and held his head up. Bruins, however, needs more production than his first round for 2014 in the 2nd round.
Take off the blue line offensive
– Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) April 21, 2019
Bruins scored 12 goals in his three regular games against the Blue. Still, Charlie McAvoy and Torrey Krug were their only defenders who contributed to the outcome with a combined three assists.
The Blue Light line entered eight points during the four games. They rarely hesitated to take open ice in front of them, even for a routine experience. But the bolts did not get enough grip to generate qualities after taking a 3-0 lead in Match 1.
The defeat of Bobrovski and Tortorela's defensive scheme takes everything to his feet. The Krug, McAvoy and Matt Grzelcyk fast-paced moving skills give Bruins a pretty solid transition game.
This series will not have so many odd men. The journey and the attacking area are the name of the game in this series. Bruins Blue Line made both in their victory over the 6th over Maple Leafs on the way to 18 shots on the net.
The fight for every centimeter of space increases with each round. The blue liners in Boston created space and fired through traffic with ease in the second half of the Toronto series. They will have to make this habit against the latest hockey league favorites.
Tukuka Raska has to come out of the duel Sergei Bobrovski.
– NHL (@NHL) April 17, 2019
It's easier to say than to do, especially after Bobrovsky's rebound from the first period of Game 1.
Both Rask and Bobrovski entered the post-zone to prove that their suspects were wrong. Rask, as we all know in Boston, is a major target for criticism whenever he allows one goal. Meanwhile, Bobrovski scored only five career-wins with under -900 winning points and goals at an average of about 4.00 in the Tampa series.
And Bobrovsky's past did not come back to pursue him against Stephen Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov, and Bradden Point. And Rask got better as the Maple Leafs went to the best 7 of his career.
In both goalies, Veszina's trophy is in its trophy cup. They would like a ring from the Stanley Cup to add to their collection of honors. The post-season can change any players, especially goalkeepers. Anyone who performs best at an even greater stage will take a step closer to rewriting their own playoff history.