Regular season success won’t guarantee playoff success vs. Leafs
Over the past three seasons the Bruins have gone 11-3-2 against the Toronto Maple Leafs which includes a 3-1-0 mark this season. It’s safe to say the Maple Leafs can just tip their hat and call the Bruins their daddy thanks to their lack of success against their Original Six rivals, but just because the Bruins have owned the regular season series, doesn’t mean the same thing will happen in the Bruins and Leafs best-of-seven playoff series.
If the Bruins look back in the past at some of their recent playoff series they very well should know that dominating the Leafs in the regular season means nothing once the puck drops Wednesday night at TD Garden.
“We’ve just got to turn the page. It’s basically a new season” said David Krejci.
“Everybody starts off 0-0, so we’ve just got to get ready, don’t think about it. We beat them three times out of four this season, and we’ve just got to go out there. We know they’re going to be playing their best, so we’ve got to get ready and the first games are really important.”
During the 2007-08 regular season the Montreal Canadiens absolutely moped the floor with the Bruins winning all eight contests while outscoring the Bruins 39- 16.
The eighth seed Bruins met the top-seeded Habs in the first round and took the Canadiens to a do-or-die Game 7 in a series that saw the Bruins drop the first two contests of the series up north in Montreal. The Habs routed the Bruins in Game 7, 5-0.
The 2009-10 Bruins very easily swept the four-game regular season series against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Bruins and their fans were ecstatic when the B’s and Canes met in the second round of the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Hurricanes jumped out to a 3-1 series lead thanks to three straight wins in Games 2, 3 and four. The Bruins would get back in the series and eventually force Game 7, where Bruins villain Scott Walker—remember him?—would find the back of the net in overtime to prove once again regular season success doesn’t guarantee playoff success.
The Maple Leafs have already put the difficulties in the regular season against the Bruins behind them, and have nothing but confidence heading into the series.
“It’s a chance to answer that bell and hopefully make some noise,” said Maple Leafs defensemen John-Michael Liles.
“It’s a completely new ball game. Does not matter what seed you are. You’re in the playoffs and you have a chance to move on and that’s how you look at it.”
A win for the Bruins in Game 1 could be just enough to deflate a Maple Leafs team that has been pushed around by the Bruins over the last several years.
A win by the Maple Leafs in Game 1, could be the spark the Leafs will need to upset the Bruins in the first round, and put a dent into any confidence the Bruins have in themselves.