Boston Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid is already a veteran of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, including winning a Stanley Cup title with the Bruins in 2011 and approaching 50 postseason games for his career before his 27th birthday.
This postseason, McQuaid, 26, has been a staple of Boston's third defensive pairing, providing a shut-down presence for Claude Julien. In the Eastern Conference Final, McQuaid scored the series-winning goal in a stunning four-game sweep of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
McQuaid has been gracious enough to agree to keep a player blog that will appear on NHL.com throughout the Stanley Cup Final.
In his latest installment, McQuaid talks about the tough 3-1 loss the Boston Bruins absorbed in Game 5 at the United Center to go down 3-2 in the best-of-7 series. He also discussed the play of forward Carl Soderberg in his first playoff game and the defense-pair shifting that went on in the third period Saturday night.
For us, we can take some positives from the third period. We pressed a little harder in the third period and we'll try to continue to build on that in the next game. We know where we stand now. We're going home and thinking about winning just one game. It's going to take everything we got. Our full focus is going to be solely on the next game and go from there.
We've been in this situation, down 3-2 in the Stanley Cup Final, but just because you have been there before doesn't mean you can rest on that alone. I think we realize that we need to be fully focused on just next game, worry about that. Obviously, it's going to take a great effort on our part to give ourselves another chance to play in a Game 7.
It was a good job by Soderberg coming into the lineup. He played a few games at the end of the year, but that was his first playoff game. That's a long stretch to not play, as much as you practice and everything, to get into the game and get into game situations can be tough. To get thrown into Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final, I thought he handled it well. He was working hard, he was moving. For a big guy, he can really move.
We did some switching off our defense pair is the third period, but it's really no big deal for us. We've all played with one another at some point in time, so I think we are lucky that way. We certainly do have experience of playing with one another. So, if you need to switch things up a bit, we have the ability to do it.