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Game Day: Bruins @ Hurricanes, Game 4

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
7:19 p.m.

Time to go Live Blogging! Go here to join in...

7:11 p.m.
FYI: Thornton is a healthy scratch.

Matt Kalman's caught the 'Canes lines...

7:09 p.m.
The B's lines...

Ference, Thornton

7:05 p.m.
It's Tim Thomas vs. Cam Ward in goal. I don't see Shawn Thornton and Andrew Ference is out. Shane Hnidy and Byron Bitz are on the ice.

6:03 p.m.
The Carolina Hurricanes Rod Brind'Amour doesn't believe in momentum carrying over during the playoffs.

"I really don't," he said this morning. "Every game takes on its own [identity] right from the start and I don't know if momentum plays a part at all.

"We're always about that next game and that next shift so...we're just going to play the same way.

"Regardless of the score, regardless of how things are going, we're just trying to focus on the moment and I think that's huge."

You can watch interviews with Brind'Amour, Eric Staal and Sergei Samsonov by clicking here.

4:44 p.m.
Hnides slides in...
Boston Bruins' Michael Ryder, center, celebrates his goal against the Montreal Canadiens with teammates Blake Wheeler, left, and Shane Hnidy during first period of Game 4 of the NHL playoff hockey series on Wednesday, April 22, 2009 in Montreal. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Paul Chiasson)
With Andrew Ference out of Game 4, the Boston Bruins turn their lonely eyes to Shane Hnidy. Hnidy, who played the last three games of the CQF series vs. Montreal and scored a goal on Apr. 18, has yet to see the ice during the series with Carolina.

"It's playoffs," said Hnidy when asked if he would be ready. "You've got to come each day and do whatever it takes and kind of go through the same motions as if you were playing...Whatever it takes to make sure you're ready."

Watching from the press box, Hnidy said he saw the same things that everyone else has seen.

"We all know that we are playing a real good hockey club," said Hnidy. "We saw how they played against New Jersey.

"You know, they maybe didn't have their best game, but then they really came [out in Game 2].

"The last two games have been theirs and it's up to us tonight -- we have to come together as a group and play our game."

As for his own game, like many Bruins, the veteran Hnidy will keep it simple.

"This is where the years come in handy," said the defenseman. "The nerves and everything are really [not a factor], it's more you really now what to expect of yourself and what's expected of you.

"It's just a matter of going out and doing it."

3:23 p.m.
The task remains the same...

Boston Bruins' Shawn Thornton celebrates his goal against the Montreal Canadiens with teammate Aaron Ward in the second period during Game 3 of an NHL quarterfinals playoff hockey game Monday, April 20, 2009 in Montreal. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Paul Chiasson)
“Nothing changed from what we set out to do in Carolina, which is to steal a game,” said B's defenseman Aaron Ward. “You have to take the same approach they took coming into Boston.

“If you come away with a victory, one out of two, then you’ve accomplished it.”

Ward explained that the B’s have one job right, now: “Getting that one victory [tonight].”

The veteran backliner said there is no panic in the B’s.

“We knew what our plan was,” he said. “It was coming here and getting a victory.

“We have to do exactly what they did to us in Boston.”

And the game can’t come fast enough for Ward.

“I like getting to the rink and getting that bitter taste out of my mouth,” he said. “That’s not the way you really want to lost a game.

“But maybe [the break] was good, because now maybe we have a little bit more disdain for that team,” said Ward, who said his sights were set on 7:30 p.m.

“I’m excited to see it come.”

1:12 p.m.
Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien points during the first period against the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 2 of an NHL hockey Eastern Conference semifinal series Sunday, May 3, 2009, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Back to the hotel from pregame skate.

After practice, Coach Claude Julien said that the Bruins did video on Thursday between Game 3 & 4.

"We always analyze the games," he said. "Win or lose, it's something that we do.

"We pull clips that help us out and clips that show where we are failing.

"Then you take it from there," said Julien.

Julien emphasized that the B's mindset has not changed, despite being down 2-1 in the best of seven game series with Carolina.

"We just made the adjustments," continued Julien. "We watched video and we hopefully made the right adjustments for tonight."

The message remains the same.

"When you are down 2-1 in the series, it is important that you come to play," he said. "It's important that you play your best game possible.

"We don't want to go back home, obviously, down 3-1, so those are the consequences that we face tonight.

"We make our own bed and we'll [have to] lay in it -- it's up to us how we want to go home," he said.

Hopefully that bed is comfortable.

12:13 p.m.
Looks like Shane Hnidy will return to the ice tonight. Coach Julien will speak in a few minutes.

11:42 a.m.
The B's are finishing up their morning skate. Andrew Ference is the only missing face.

10:07 a.m.

Carolina Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice, center left, and associate head coach Ron Francis, center right, talk to the team during a timeout in the second period of an NHL first-round hockey playoff game against the New Jersey Devils in Raleigh, N.C., Tuesday, April 21, 2009. The Hurricanes won 4-3 to tie the series at two games each. (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)
We’re in the arena waiting on the Carolina Hurricanes to hit the ice for their morning skate at 10:30 a.m.

Maurice on pressure
“I think over the course of the year, we just play an awful lot of one-goal games,” said Carolina head coach Paul Maurice when he spoke to the media on Thursday. “We’re a team that has to fight very hard to make the playoffs.

“It doesn’t mean we’re not a good team. It just means that we’re going to play a lot of tight, pressure-filled, games.”

And how.

“We’re talking about making they playoffs here since January,” said Maurice. “So that pressure, when you get to the playoffs, [the team’s] lived through it – they’ve experienced it.”

The ex-Whaler effect
Two of Hartford’s finest were singled out as players who advanced the hockey culture in Carolina and created the hardworking Hurricanes who reside in the RBC Center at the present date.

Asked why some of his players exhibit an advanced level of maturity, and whether that maturity can be attributed to a former player like former WhalerCane Glen Wesley, Maurice said yes, “insofar as I think you carry on the traditions on of the players who played here.

“Ronnie Francis’ impact on our team, as a player, is still in our locker room – Glen’s as well. We’ve had some older, veteran guys.

“I don’t think that they leave just after they retire, I think that their personality and how they approach the game has something to do with the way we go [on],” he said.
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