It's a series again. This is why the Stanley Cup playoffs are by far the best playoffs in North American sports. Quick thoughts about the Bruins' 4-2 loss in Toronto Monday night:
1. Toronto didn't suck for 60 minutes
As amazing as the B's looked in Games 1 and 2, especially on offense, Toronto played like garbage in those games. Full credit to the Bruins for taking that trash out to the curb, but now the Leafs have showed up and played like an NHL team. And the Bruins had trouble overcoming that.
2. The refs sucked, but Bruins lost on their own
The weird non-icing calls, the bad delay of game call, the refs were awful. So what? It's not like the Bruins dominated this game otherwise. It was a back and forth tilt, Bruins didn't do enough to win with or without shaky officiating.
3. Rask wasn't great
It is not unfair for me to ask a supposedly great goalie to give us a great performance. Rask wasn't a big reason why the Bruins lost, but he didn't do enough to be a reason for them to win. That's his M.O. in the playoffs, and I'm sick of it.
4. Bruins need offense from more than one line
Toronto used the last shift to set the match ups they wanted and cool off the red hot Bergeron line. The B's 4th line did their job, but there wasn't much offense from the other forwards. It'll be tough to go deep with only one line scoring goals.
5. Bruins need to find a way to win grinding games
The Bruins have the offensive skills to cycle and score. They're one of the best teams in the NHL at that. But are they one of the best at grinding too? They'll need to be. This was a physical game with every play contested, every body on a body. The Bruins weren't physically dominated BUT they didn't physically dominate either.
Can they do better than play to a stalemate in such a rough game?