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Bruins vs Red Wings

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Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Five reasons why the Red Wings were eliminated

Sunday, 04.27.2014 / 2:08 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

The Detroit Red Wings knew things were going to have to break absolutely perfectly for them to upset the top-seeded Boston Bruins, winner of the Presidents' Trophy, in their Eastern Conference First Round series.

Needless to say, Detroit did not get the breaks it needed. After a 1-0 victory at TD Garden in the opener, the Red Wings lost four in a row and were eliminated in five games.

It was a disappointing end for a team that weathered injuries and controversy throughout the season before authoring a terrific finishing kick that left them as the tournament's dark horse in the eyes of many.

It didn't work out that way, however. Here are five reasons for Detroit's inability to pull off the upset:

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Five reasons why the Bruins advanced

Sunday, 04.27.2014 / 1:00 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

The Boston Bruins are the top-seeded team in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They were expected to beat the Detroit Red Wings, a team that found its way into the postseason during the last week of the regular season.

But as history has proven repeatedly, the expected is not always what happens in the NHL's second season.

Yet the Bruins were able to accomplish exactly what most anticipated would happen in the Eastern Conference First Round, winning the best-of-7 series in five games. After losing 1-0 in Game 1 on a late goal by Detroit's Pavel Datsyuk, the Bruins showed their skill and depth while rolling off four straight victories.

The Bruins advance to face the Montreal Canadiens, their most bitter rival, in the second round of the playoffs. But before we look ahead to what will be an emotional and intriguing Eastern Conference Second Round series, let's look back at five reasons the Bruins were able to so effectively tame the Red Wings.


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Lucic helps power Bruins into second round

Saturday, 04.26.2014 / 8:13 PM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins forward Milan Lucic has always been one of those players who can seemingly will his team to victory when he is at the absolute peak of his game.

Lucic's combination of skill and physicality has made him the perfect Bruins-type player. He did a little bit of everything in leading Boston to a five-game series victory against the Detroit Red Wings in their Eastern Conference First Round series, which ended with Boston's 4-2 win Saturday at TD Garden.


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Hamilton handling tough assignments for Bruins

Friday, 04.25.2014 / 6:49 PM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

BOSTON -- Slightly more than a minute into the third period Thursday, the Boston Bruins trailed 2-1 in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference First Round series against the Detroit Red Wings.

The Red Wings, desperate for a home-ice win that would have evened the series, were pressuring the Bruins' top defense pair of Zdeno Chara and Dougie Hamilton, who needed to get to the bench for a change.

Chara, the left defenseman, was able to get off easily, but right defenseman Hamilton needed to use some guile. First he circled behind his net to slow down forechecking forward Gustav Nyquist, then he hesitated just long enough between the circles to throw off forward Darren Helm and allow teammate Milan Lucic to get his feet moving.

Unaware of the 20-year-old's passing ability, Helm cheated to the opposite side and clearly anticipated that Hamilton's pass would go off the wall. Lucic, on the other hand, knew from a couple of years' worth of practices that he could get a scoring chance out of Hamilton's precise first pass and opted to stay on the ice rather get his own change.

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Zetterberg's return ends in disappointment

Friday, 04.25.2014 / 1:06 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

DETROIT -- Henrik Zetterberg hopes to have a few more games this season in order to work himself into optimal playing shape. The Detroit Red Wings will have to win in Boston to give him that chance.

Zetterberg returned to the Red Wings' lineup Thursday for the first time since Feb. 8. He was greeted by a loud cheer when he stepped on the ice for warmups and provided an emotional lift to his team. But as the game wore on he, like the Red Wings, started to drag.

Detroit gave up a two-goal lead and lost 3-2 in overtime to the Boston Bruins to fall into a 3-1 hole in the best-of-7 Eastern Conference First Round series. Game 5 is Saturday at TD Garden (3 p.m. ET; NBC, RDS, TSN).

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Rask responds for Bruins in Game 4 win

Friday, 04.25.2014 / 12:43 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- One goaltender was a late scratch from Game 4 of the Eastern Conference First Round between the Boston Bruins and the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday. The other couldn't stop his team from falling in a 2-0 hole early in the game.

Fortunately for the Bruins, Tuukka Rask didn't let the two goals he allowed in the first 24:27 make him sick. And despite a valiant effort by Detroit backup Jonas Gustavsson, the Red Wings weren't able to prevail with their starter Jimmy Howard nowhere to be found rink side because of what was announced as flu-like symptoms.

Rask finished with 35 saves at Joe Louis Arena in the Bruins' 3-2 overtime victory, which put them ahead 3-1 in the best-of-7 series with Game 5 scheduled for Saturday at TD Garden (3 p.m. ET; NBC, TSN, RDS).


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Red Wings look to up tempo, pressure on Rask

Wednesday, 04.23.2014 / 5:02 PM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

DETROIT -- Mike Babcock's feelings about the Detroit Red Wings' struggling offense might be best summed up by the coach's analysis of the impact Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask has had on the Eastern Conference First Round series.

"He's a world-class goalie, skates great, looks great in warm-up," Babcock said. "That's where he's getting his most shots."

In fairness, Rask faced 35 shots in Game 2 and 82 through three games in the best-of-7 series; he's stopped 80 of them, including 57 of the past 58, for a .976 save percentage and 0.67 goals-against average. He's second in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in both categories to Minnesota Wild goalie Darcy Kuemper, who hasn't allowed a goal but has faced only 36 shots.

The fewest goals Detroit has scored in a series which lasted at least five games is eight (twice, in five-game series in 1944 and 2000). The Red Wings, who trail the series 2-1, managed only 23 shots on goal in a 3-0 loss in Game 3 Tuesday, but the number of times they tested Rask fell far short of their total number of shots.

Game 4 is Thursday at Joe Louis Arena (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, NESN, FS-D).

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Red Wings lament bad first period in Game 3 loss

Wednesday, 04.23.2014 / 12:45 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

DETROIT -- Detroit Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard had no idea what was coming as he sat in the home dressing room prior to the start of Game 3 on Tuesday.

"I thought we were ready to go in here," Howard said. "You could sense that everyone was focused, and it just didn't happen for us."

The Red Wings were run out of their own building in the first period before losing 3-0 to the Boston Bruins to fall into a 2-1 hole in the best-of-7 Eastern Conference First Round series. Game 4 is back at Joe Louis Arena on Thursday (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, NESN, FS-D).

"We didn't play very well at all," Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall said. "We were just running around."


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Bruins defenseman Hamilton proves to be quick study

Wednesday, 04.23.2014 / 12:30 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Matt Kalman - NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- Boston Bruins defenseman Dougie Hamilton is a quick learner.

That attribute, combined with his immense ability, allowed him to become a regular in the NHL as a 19-year-old in 2012-13 and a top-pair defenseman in his second season. It also helped him score a key goal in Game 3 of the Bruins' Eastern Conference First Round series against the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday.

The Bruins won 3-0 to go up 2-1 in the best-of-7 series. Game 4 is Thursday (8 p.m. ET, TSN, NBCSN, NESN, FS-D) in Detroit.

The first bit of knowledge Hamilton applied from Game 2 to Game 3 was that the Red Wings were going to give him room to roam with the puck. He took advantage of that several times in Game 3 and nearly scored three goals before the game was 12 minutes old.

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Red Wings grab series lead on Datsyuk's 'dagger'

Saturday, 04.19.2014 / 12:24 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

BOSTON -- Pavel Datsyuk scored the only goal Friday in a memorable Game 1 between the Boston Bruins and Detroit Red Wings at TD Garden.

After playing 56-plus minutes of taut, low-risk hockey, the game was turned on its heels by a moment of sheer brilliance from Datsyuk, the skilled Detroit center who has become famous for such plays. So much so, in fact, he has earned the nickname "Magic Man."

Datsyuk added to his legend with a dazzling display of skill that enabled Detroit to steal a 1-0 victory in the opening game of the Eastern Conference First Round series and, in the process, grab home-ice advantage from the Bruins, who are the top seed in the Stanley Cup Playoffs by virtue of winning the Presidents' Trophy.

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