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B's Focus is Squarely on Toronto

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
WILMINGTON, Mass. -- As the B's hold practice prior to their afternoon flight to Toronto both players and coaches understand it's no fluke that Boston has been able to turn their season around in November.

And they also know, that moving forward into December and beyond, consistency will be the key to another long run in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"I think our biggest thing is not looking at what we’ve done in the past," said Shawn Thornton after Monday's practice. "Every day we’ve kind of come to the rink and focus on the task ahead.

"I know last year we said it a lot, we’re really good at taking it one game at a time and it has kind of been the same thing.

"It hasn’t been the big picture, it hasn’t been that we won ten in a row or have points in the last whatever. We have Toronto on Wednesday and that’s the focus."

After all, focusing on the Leafs shouldn't be that hard -- much of the team is from Ontario and Toronto games are always circled in red pen -- and a quick look at the standings can tell you these are not your father's TML.

First in the Northeast Division (14-8-2, 30 points) and boasting two of the NHL's top individual scoring leaders in Phil Kessel (16-15-31) and Joffrey Lupul (11-18-29) Wednesday and Saturday's matchups might go a long way in telling whether Boston will be vying for home ice come April.

"It all goes out the window if you don’t keep focusing on what’s ahead of you," said Thornton, who hails from Oshawa, Ontario. "We’ve been playing well lately, but it means nothing if we don’t keep playing well, so I think that’s the main focus."

Consistency throughout the lineup is also a major contributor to the Bruins success.

"Well I think that’s one of our strengths, is that we’re a deep team--I think it might be our biggest strength," said Thornton. "You’re going to need everyone to contribute on different nights.

"I know I speak for our line [with Daniel Paille and Gregory Campbell], we want to create as much offensive-zone-time as possible and create energy for the other guys coming behind us and ahead of us.

" I think we’ve definitely been better of late -- our last couple of games were probably our best games as a line...[but] we’ve got to continue to do that because the last few games don’t mean anything if we don’t play well against Toronto."
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