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Stanley Cup Final
Posted On Tuesday, 06.25.2013 / 2:09 AM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Blackhawks forwards dealt with several injuries

BOSTON -- No team wins the Stanley Cup without injuries, but they rarely, if ever, disclose them while the ride is ongoing.

The Chicago Blackhawks' doctors and trainers were certainly busy throughout the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, and coach Joel Quenneville revealed some of what they had to deal with shortly after Dave Bolland's goal in the final minute completed Chicago's historic come-from-behind 3-2 Cup-clinching win against the Boston Bruins in Game 6 Monday at TD Garden.

Quenneville said Marian Hossa was dealing with a bad back; Michal Handzus had injuries to his hand and knee; and Bryan Bickell, who scored the tying goal Monday, suffered a Grade 2 knee sprain at the end of the Western Conference Final against the Los Angeles Kings. All Quenneville would say about Jonathan Toews, who played in Game 6 after sitting out the third period of Game 5, is that "he got his bell rung, he was fine."

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Posted On Tuesday, 06.25.2013 / 1:28 AM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Bruins' Chara won't blame injury for tough time

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara has a Norris Trophy, several All-Star Game appearances and a Stanley Cup championship on his resume. The 6-foot-9, 255-pound blueliner is widely regarded as the best shutdown defenseman in the NHL.

So that he was on the ice for 10 of the Chicago Blackhawks' last 12 goals over the course of the last three games of the Stanley Cup Final was a major shock. There had to be a physical reason for Chara's struggles.

Unfortunately, the hockey world will have to wait a couple of days to find out what was hampering Chara other than the Blackhawks' top line of Jonathan Toews, Bryan Bickell and Patrick Kane.

"I'm not thinking about my physical status. Sorry," Chara said after the Blackhawks defeated the Bruins, 3-2, at TD Garden on Monday in Game 6 of the Cup Final.

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 11:54 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Bruins forward Jagr in and out of Game 6

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins forward Jaromir Jagr left and returned to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday.

Jagr was one of three players to leave the game in the first period before trying to play then departing before returning again.

Jagr took four shifts and played 3:03 in the first period before adding a 32-second shift early in the second. He played briefly in the third period at finished with 6:27 of ice time.

The Blackhawks won their second Stanley Cup in four seasons with a 3-2 win.

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 9:44 PM

By Corey Masisak -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Blackhawks captain Toews playing in Game 6

BOSTON -- Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews is playing in Game 6 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final against the Boston Bruins on Monday (NBC, CBC, RDS).

Toews scored for the Blackhawks 4:24 into the second period to tie the game 1-1.

He was held out of the third period in Game 5 on Saturday but took part in the morning skate Monday at TD Garden and pronounced himself fit for duty as the Blackhawks try to claim the Stanley Cup for the second time in four seasons.

"I feel great. I'm excited. There's no question about where I am physically," Toews said. "I think that was just the coaches being cautious, not letting me get back on the ice in the third period the other night. We got to the point where I was ready to go again. I'll be ready to go tonight."

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 8:20 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Bruins' Bergeron in lineup for Game 6

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron is in the lineup for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on Monday (NBC, CBC, RDS), delivering on the confidence of his coach, Claude Julien, who said Monday morning Bergeron would be able to play.

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 4:01 PM

By Kevin Weekes -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Weekes on the Web

Weekes on Bruins: Rask must deliver all-world effort

The Boston Bruins need an all-world performance from Tuukka Rask in Game 6 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final.

I thought Rask was amazing in Game 5, but he has to be all-world in Game 6 on Monday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS). You can expect the Chicago Blackhawks to be unbelievable knowing that the Stanley Cup is on the line. I think Rask is going to have to be unbelievable and steal the game for the Bruins.

Boston as a team has to be really good defensively, and they've kind of gotten away from it in the past couple games. The Bruins have gotten away from some of the little things.

It is not just in the defensive zone, but starting there, it begins with sealing off in front of the net. Sealing out Chicago forwards in front of Rask, and making sure they front those guys, has to be a priority. They can’t allow the Chicago forwards two and three opportunities off an initial point shot or a deflection.

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 4:00 PM

By Kevin Weekes -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Weekes on the Web

Weekes on Blackhawks: Don't change a thing

In Game 6 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final, the Chicago Blackhawks need to play the same game they played in Game 5 and the same game they played in Game 4.

No different -- no different offensively, no different defensively. On the offensive end, the hunger they've shown and the willingness to compete they've shown against the Boston Bruins has been remarkable.

You can pick any example from Jonathan Toews, but more importantly it is Bryan Bickell on that line doing exactly what he was doing before the start of this series. That opens things up. I call Bickell a space creator because he opens things up for Patrick Kane and for Toews to be able to make plays.

More often than that, if you look at the goals that line has scored in the past two games, Bickell will be there first and then Kane will follow, or vice versa. My point is, the Blackhawks are getting layered screens and layered traffic in front of Boston goalie Tuukka Rask.

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 12:56 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Bruins' Ference understands both sides of Game 6

BOSTON -- Most players in the Boston Bruins dressing room were part of the 2011 team that avoided elimination in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final then won the Cup on the road two nights later.

But few in black and gold know what it's like to be in the Chicago Blackhawks' position, which is leading the series 3-2 heading into Game 6 Monday at TD Garden (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS).

Defenseman Andrew Ference is one who's been on each side.

In addition to helping the Bruins beat the Vancouver Canucks in 2011, Ference played for the Calgary Flames in 2004. That season, the Flames were at home for Game 6 and did not finish the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning won Game 7 as well.

"Well, it's a tough one, for sure," Ference said Monday after the Bruins morning skate. "I've been on both sides, where I had a chance to win in Game 6 and didn't and ended up losing, and then vice versa. It's a difficult game to win. At this point of the series there's no secrets between each other. Everybody knows the stakes and what you're going to get out of each other. And it's just a matter of that razor-thin line of success or defeat. It just depends on individual performances and small little details, that if you're showing up for your first hockey game tonight you wouldn't be able to see. But everybody in the room knows what they have to do and you hope that's enough to put you over the edge."

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 12:36 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Stanley Cup Final series blog

Bruins' focus: defensive awareness, more physicality

BOSTON -- With nine goals allowed in the past two games, eight with a goaltender in the crease, the Boston Bruins defense has been much leakier than it had been previously in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

So as they try to avoid elimination Monday in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS), the Bruins are going to have to do a better job of containing some of the Chicago Blackhawks' best players, including Patrick Kane.

Kane has scored three goals in the past two games.

"Well, it takes an extreme amount of awareness of everybody on the ice," Bruins defenseman Andrew Ference said after his team's morning skate. "Our defensive game relies on a five-man unit picking up their assignments and just being ultra-aware of positioning and where the threats are. So like I said, you're not asking anybody to do anything that they've never done before. Everybody knows what it takes. We've played against some pretty amazing offensive players and teams, and I think you're asking everybody to play defensively to the potential that they've shown."

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Posted On Monday, 06.24.2013 / 12:35 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose: The Blackhawks will win tonight

As we wait for the puck to drop tonight for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, the Chicago Blackhawks are right on the cusp of their second championship in four seasons. While it's been a great series so far, and these are two great teams, I have a feeling it may be pretty tough for the Boston Bruins to keep this thing going to a Game 7 on Wednesday.

Here are a few of my thoughts as we get ready for Game 6 tonight:

Bergeron's absence changes the game: Bruins coach Claude Julien said Monday he was "confident" Patrice Bergeron would play Monday night, and he had better hope so, because if Bergeron is out of the lineup, I just think it'll be too big a loss to overcome. When you look at what's happening here, the Bruins have lost two games in a row, they're not playing great, Zdeno Chara is struggling, Brad Marchand and Jaromir Jagr aren't doing much right now. And then you look at the other side of the coin. Chicago is starting to play the best hockey it's played all series, Patrick Kane is on fire, Bryan Bickell is playing well, the Sharp line is playing well, defensively they look rock solid and Corey Crawford has been much maligned, but all the guy does is win and now he's one win away from the Stanley Cup. I just think mentally and physically, the loss of Bergeron would be too much to overcome.

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Quote of the Day

I think everyone left it out there. Every game this season, regular season and playoffs, we played as hard as we could. We're not out of the playoffs right now because of lack of effort, and that's all that we can ask of each other.

— Predators defenseman Seth Jones after Nashville was eliminated by Chicago in Game 6 on Saturday