Obviously, the atmosphere for these games is always intense, loud and highly-anticipated, but the Bruins know they need to keep their focus.
As such, B's captain Zdeno Chara
will make sure the team has the right mindset even before the puck drops at 7:00 p.m.
“It’s going to be one of those games we should get really ready for,” said the Bruins captain. “It’s very important.
"You don’t want to fall any deeper in the standings.”
“These games are big and not even talking about the rivalry,just as far as the standings and where both teams are,” he said.
The Bruins and Canadiens are both not where they would like to be as Boston currently holds a fourth place record of 3-5, sitting just above last place Montreal (2-5-2) in the Northeast Division.
Center Patrice Bergeron
agreed with his captain and recognized the B's current position in standings when he spoke to the press on Thursday.
“We’ve got to realize that it is a division game and it’s huge points, especially at the end of the year when you look back," said Bergeron. "You don’t want to get behind the eight-ball."
The Bruins alternate captain has been a part of Montreal and Boston's heated "Original Six" rivalry throughout his nine seasons with the franchise. From that experience, the forward has learned to appreciate the excitement of the matchup, but not let it throw him off in the moment.
“We need to get up for all the games and be ready and make sure we’ve got the emotion every night and have the urgency of getting those two points,” said Bergeron.
Defenseman Steven Kampfer is familiar with the commotion of an intense rivalry and remembered his NCAA days when his University of Michigan Wolverines would take on Michigan State Spartans. However, the 23-year old blueliner said that regardless of the attention that comes with a heated match-up, the Bruins cannot be tempted to leave the parameters of their game.
“You just want to do the best thing for the team,” explained Kampfer. “You try to just play your game and you try to do whatever is going to help the team win.”
The young blue-liner and the rest of the Bruins squad don’t want to wait any longer to get things rolling again; with a loud TD Garden crowd, Thursday night is the perfect time to do it.
“We want to get back on track, we want to get back to .500 here,” he said. ---John Griffin