Friday, April 04, 2008
BRUINS EARN A PLAYOFF BERTH!!!
The Bruins were also in Ontario Friday night, on the verge of clinching a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. All they needed to do was win, and have either Carolina or New Jersey lose. Captain Zdeno Chara put the Bruins ahead in the 2nd period with his career high 17th goal of the season. By this point, Carolina was losing 3-1 to Florida.
Phil Kessel scored his 19th of the year to put the Bruins ahead 2-0. Carolina had closed the gap on Florida but was still trailing. Antoine Vermitte scored late in the 3rd for Ottawa, and the game got intense, with over 20,000 screaming Senators fans urging their team on. As the game was nearing its finish, the Carolina score went final. This clinched a playoff spot for Ottawa, and all the Bruins had to do was hang keep Ottawa from scoring 2 goals in regulation. Ottawa didn't score at all, thanks to some gritty play by the 4th liners and the Bruins qualified for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time since 2004.
It's still extremely unclear who the Bruins will play in the 1st round. Right now they're 6th, which matches them up against the red hot Capitals. But if Washington fails to get a point in their last game, Carolina would take their place. Montreal and Pittsburgh are currently tied for the 1st seed in the East, each with a game left to play. If the Bruins win against Buffalo Saturday night, and the Rangers lose in regulation on Sunday, the Bruins could move up to 5th. The Bruins will be anything from the 5th seed to the 8th seed when the playoffs start.
Here are the possible teams the Bruins could face:
New Jersey Devils
Whoever it is, it's simply awesome to be in the playoffs. None of the experts picked the B's to finish higher than 10th in the pre-season, then we lost Bergeron 10 games in, and here we are, thinking about who we'll face in the STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS!!!
AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Fred Chartrand