The Boston Bruins won their third straight game Wednesday night to lead the Philadelphia Flyers 3-0 in their Eastern Semifinals series. The 5-1 win puts them in the same exact position as one year ago before Boston’s historical collapse. Philadelphia has played well thus far but their goaltending has not allowed them to ever really get into this series.
Key Number Five- Daniel Paille
Claude Julien has been questioned for not playing rookie sensation Tyler Seguin. Fans have not been happy to see the less flashy and less productive Michael Ryder and Daniel Paille. However, Paille played himself into a spot on the playoff roster with three goals in the last week of the season. Paille came up big again tonight with the third goal of the game for Boston to extend the lead. I still feel Seguin is the better player but Paille earned his position here and he continues to with every shift.
Number Four- Nathan Horton
Horton had the Gordie Howe hat trick this game with a goal, fight, and two assists. He now has five goals in these playoffs, the first of his career after being shipped from Florida. The fight he got into with Sean O’Donnell also gave Boston some momentum as well as his goal to give the Bruins a 4-0 lead late into the second. His goal was the one to chase Brian Boucher from the game.
Number Three- Dennis Seidenberg
With Adam McQuaid going down last game Dennis Seidenberg logged a whopping 36:10. He was first on the team that game in minutes even over Zdeno Chara who has been ill. Seidenberg started off his post season horribly with two bad games filled with turnovers versus Montreal but he has turned it around in a hurry. His final five games against Montreal and these first three versus the Flyers have been superb, and while the defense has struggled the Bruins will need him.
Number Two- Two early goals
Zdeno Chara and David Krejci scored within the first minute of the game to take the Flyers out before it could begin. They scored 33 seconds apart to stun Boucher and the Philadelphia Flyers. They would score a late goal in the second period but other than that their offense was stunted from scoring all game. This has to have helped in the Bruins game plan, as they have always played better with a lead, losing only three games when leading by two heading into the third.
Number One- Goaltending
Can anyone tell me why Sergei Bobrovsky is not playing over Boucher? Because I can not figure it out. Boucher had a horrible season while Bobrovsky wasn’t awful and Boucher has single handedly let the Bruins dominate this series. Philadelphia has not been bad, but the goaltending has been. It has been the Philadelphia fatal flaw all season long and it seems to finally be coming back to bite them. If I were Peter Laviolette I would start Bobrovsky in this desperate Game Four.
Game Four takes place in Boston Friday night as Philadelphia faces a d0-or-die.