Tuukka Rask’s stellar efficiency helped the Bruins pressure a Sport 7, and what was mentioned to be a stirring pre-game speech from Patrice Bergeron lit a hearth underneath Boston earlier than the puck had even been dropped.Tuukka Rask and David Pastrnak|Jamie Squire/Getty ImagesST. LOUIS – There was by no means any assure the Boston Bruins have been going to pressure a Sport 7 within the Stanley Cup ultimate, largely as a result of they’re severely banged up and operating on fumes. What was a 100 p.c, ironclad assurance, nonetheless, was that these wounded bears wouldn’t go quietly into the evening.
There may be an excessive amount of satisfaction, an excessive amount of expertise, an excessive amount of character for the Bruins to not at the least go down swinging. If the St. Louis Blues have been going to elevate the Stanley Cup for the primary time in franchise historical past Sunday evening, they have been going to must earn the privilege. And that’s precisely correctly. So now we now have a Sport 7 on this heavyweight brawl between Apollo Creed (performed by the Bruins) and Rocky Balboa (performed by the Blues). The one factor left to be decided if it’s the ending from Rocky or Rocky II.
The Bruins have been getting some nice depth contributions, however it was time for his or her veterans to take the wheel. And two of them did in Patrice Bergeron and Tuukka Rask, one together with his phrases, the opposite together with his actions. Previous to the 5-1 victory, Bergeron stood up and gave what was, by all accounts, a spine-chilling speech. And Rask went out and cemented his Conn Smythe Trophy credentials with a efficiency for the ages. He stopped 12 photographs on the penalty kill and crushed the Blues’ spirits.
First, Bergeron. The Bruins’ alternate captain speaks softly and carries a two-way stick. He’s economical together with his phrases and didn’t waste a single one when he spoke from the guts earlier than Sport 6. “He stepped up big-time,” mentioned Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy. “It was precisely what we wanted. It was. It was a component of what the dream is. Rising up, each one in every of us shares the identical dream. We have been all little children as soon as and all of us wished this dangerous and I feel it was simply a component of savoring this second and never letting it finish tonight. When he talks, you hear. That’s the presence he has.”
And talking of presence, the man within the internet has a certain quantity of that, too. The final time the Cup was within the constructing in a Sport 6, Rask gave up two targets in 17 seconds to show what seemed like a visit to Sport 7 right into a six-game loss by the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks. There are some Bruins followers who won’t ever let him neglect that and others who wished to see him run out of city early within the season. Not that Rask wants redemption, however there most likely aren’t too many individuals who really feel that means now. “Greatest participant, he’s our greatest participant,” McAvoy mentioned. “He has been all playoffs and all common season. We all know that when he performs like that, to one of the best of his talents, and we do our jobs in entrance of him, he’s going to be there, he’s going to be that stone.”
There are occasions when a goalie doesn’t must steal video games within the playoffs, however he can’t lose them, both. And there are occasions when a crew requires that epic, otherworldly goaltending to be able to advance. Rask has supplied that quite a lot of occasions in these playoffs. The Conn Smythe awaits. In reality, even when the Bruins lose Sport 7 of this collection, Rask might have already given the Conn Smythe engraver purpose to burn it into his or her reminiscence that Rask has two U’s and two Okay’s in his first title.
“Should you don’t get goaltending, you don’t win fairly often,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy mentioned. “We’re no completely different than anyone else. We supported him ultimately with some targets and we obtained one early and I feel that helps everyone. Good for Tuukka. He’s allowed us a chance to play in a Sport 7 and the entire hockey world loves a Sport 7. It ought to be an important evening in Boston and will one of the best crew win.”
Certainly. Can the Blues come again from this and win in enemy territory? Completely, notably given the truth that highway groups are Four-2 on this collection. It simply was not going to occur Sunday evening. Tuukka Rask, Patrice Bergeron and the remainder of the Bruins have been merely not going to permit it. “We’re a household,” McAvoy mentioned. “All of us imagine in one another and we love one another. Simply the considered it being over (Sunday evening) was terrifying.”
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Tags: boston bruins, st. louis blues, stanley cup playoffsConnect: Concerning the AuthorKen CampbellKen Campbell, The Hockey Information’ senior author, is in his second tour with the model after an eight-year stint as a beat reporter for the Maple Leafs for the Toronto Star. The Sudbury native as soon as tried out for the Ontario League’s Wolves as a 30-year-old. For sure, it did not work out.