March 28th, 2011 by

Bruins clinch playoff berth, enter crucial stretch

(S. babineau/Getty Images) Thomas made 28 saves, including 11 in the third, for his 32nd victory of the season Sunday night

After their 2-1 victory over the Flyers Sunday night, the Bruins have officially clinched a berth — for the fourth consecutive season — in the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Boston improved to 3-0-1 on the season against Philadelphia and became the fourth team in the Eastern conference to clinch a spot in the postseason.

With the win, the Bruins increased their lead to seven points in the Northeast Division over the Montreal Canadiens. But even though they’ve beaten the Habs in two of the last three meetings, and for that matter have fared well against the top teams in the East, there’s still a concern about their record against the last few teams in the playoff race.

Against the Penguins, Flyers and Capitals — three of the top four teams from the East — the Bruins have compiled an impressive 8-2-2 in 12 games. Against the Lightning, Sabres, Habs and Rangers — currently seeded fifth through eighth — the team hasn’t been as impressive going just 8-6-1 in 15 games, but they still have a chance to improve that record when they face the Blueshirts on April 4th at Madison Square Garden.

Although the Bruins have seemingly snapped out of their slump with victories over the Habs, Devils and Flyers this week, a lot still remains to be seen with this week’s home stand, which begins Tuesday with a matchup against the Chicago Blackhawks — who are currently eighth in the West — and concludes with Toronto Thursday and Atlanta on Saturday. While the Hawks are fighting for their playoff lives, the Maple Leafs and Thrashers have both given the Bruins some problems this season, who are a combined 3-3-2 against the 10th and 11th place teams in the East, respectively.

For that matter, five of the last seven games left on the Bruins’ schedule are against teams who are outside of the top eight in the East, including the last two home games against the last place Senators and 13th place Islanders.

The points are there for the taking, and as crazy as this may sound to some, the last seven games should say a lot about the Bruins’ chances of breaking their 39-year Stanley Cup drought.

Share "Bruins clinch playoff berth, enter crucial stretch" via

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

More in Post Game
Oct 20, 14 hours ago

Svedberg shuts out Buffalo, continues success

After a tough outing on the back end of a back-to-back in Montreal from work horse Tuukka Rask, the Boston Bruins turned to their backup Niklas Svedberg in Buffalo. Svedberg was sensational on the night posting his first career shutout and earning hi…

Oct 18, 2 days ago

Bruins’ defensemen bounce back in victory over Sabres

After Thursday’s loss to the Canadiens, the Bruins talked a lot about correcting their defensive mistakes and getting back to basics in their own zone. The Bruins were not happy with their breakdowns in the defensive zone and knew they needed to co…

Oct 17, 4 days ago

Defensive Breakdowns, Bad Bounces Sink Bruins in Loss to Canadiens

Meeting for the first time since the Canadiens ended the Bruins season much earlier than expected last May, all the bounces went Montreal’s way. It started in the first period and carried all the way to third as the Canadiens defeated the Bruins 6-…