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Game Three Preview: CHI @ BOS

by Eric Russo / Boston Bruins – This Boston Bruins team has shown that it is a resilient one all season long. And in Game Two of the Stanley Cup Final against the Chicago Blackhawks, it was no different. The B’s came back to win, 2-1, in overtime, a feat that seemed almost impossible when they were outshot 19-4 by the Hawks in the first period.

The Bruins knew they needed a major turn around in order to get themselves back in the series.

“We have a collective group of guys,” said Torey Krug. “The leadership’s amazing in the room. It’s never quiet in there. There is always someone talking and letting you know what’s going on. The overall message was that we got to come out better prepared for the next period and ready to go.”

Now the Bruins will be looking to carry over their momentum into Game Three back at TD Garden tonight. But despite stealing away home-ice advantage from the Hawks, the Bruins aren’t getting too high.

“I don’t think we should be too comfortable, but we should be confident with our game right now,” said Daniel Paille, who potted the winning goal in Game Two. “We know we got a good goaltender helping us out there, and I think we all have faith and trust in our game.”

Being back in Boston for Games Three and Four should also boost the Bruins, who remember what it was like to play in front of the Garden Faithful during the 2011 Cup Final.

“I think the excitement in the rink,” said Adam McQuaid, when queried on what he remembers about the Garden during the Final in 2011. “It’s been a long time since that same finals. Everyone was excited, and I know we were excited to be back home. It was a tough situation being down two games. We knew the importance of coming back strong at home. We’re looking forward to that experience again, of playing at home.”

“I’m looking forward to seeing the excitement in this building,” added Paille. “I remember two years ago how loud it was. I can’t wait to hear it again.”

The Bruins are looking forward to having the fans on their side again, after being in hostile territory for much of the past week.

“I think it’s going to be as crazy as always,” said Tuukka Rask. “We feel like we’ve got the best fans in the league. They’ve always shown us great support. I don’t think it’s going to be any different [tonight].”

The Blackhawks, meanwhile, are looking forward to the challenge of playing on the road.

"All we're thinking about is one game right now - we don't look past it and we don't look back," said Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith.

SPECIAL TEAMS: Much like the Eastern Conference Finals, not much is happening on the power play for either team. The Bruins have the lone power play goal in the series, a Patrice Bergeron snipe in the third period of Game One. Overall, the B’s are 1-for-5 in the series.

The Blackhawks have gone 0-for-3 in each of the first two games of the series.

The Bruins have killed off 22 consecutive penalties overall and the penalty kill is at 87.9% for the postseason. The Blackhawks still lead the league with the most effective penalty kill rate at 93.7%.

The Bruins are 8-for-50 on the power play this postseason (16.0%). Meanwhile, the Blackhawks are 7-for-57 on the power play (12.3%).  

BETWEEN THE PIPES: Rask has kept up his stellar play in the first two games of the Final. Rask held the Bruins in the game during the first period of Game Two, allowing just one goal on 19 shots (the Bruins were outshot 19-4). For the game, Rask stopped 33 of 34 shots, after his 59-save (on 63 shots) performance in the B’s triple overtime loss in Game One.

“A big part of that was Tuukka,” said Daniel Paille, on the Bruins ability to comeback. “He kept us in the game. We had to kind of regroup in the first intermission and we were able to kind of slow the game down a little bit, where we were able to control for most of it. We found our game in overtime again there and it was good to have everyone kind of clicking at once.”

Corey Crawford matched Rask for much of Game Two, making 26 stops on 28 shots. He made 51 saves in Game One.

YIPPEE PAILLE: Daniel Paille’s winning goal at 13:48 of the extra session was the first career playoff overtime goal of his career. It was the second game-winning goal in 18 games this postseason. The goal and assist on the night gave him seven points (3 goals, 4 assists), marking the highest single playoffs total of his career (previous high was six points in 2011).

LOOSE ENDS: The Bruins are now 5-2 in overtime games this postseason, while the Blackhawks are 4-2...The Bruins are 10-2 in their last 12 games, with both losses coming in overtime. They are outscoring opponents 38-21 in that span...For the second time in as many games, the winning team did not lead at any point in the game...For the first time since the 2004 Stanley Cup Final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Calgary Flames, there was a split in the first two games of the Cup Final...For the second consecutive year, Games One and Two have been decided in extra time. Prior to 2012, it had been 61 years since both Games One and Two required overtime.  

INJURIES: Nathan Horton, who left Game One in the first overtime and did not return, was back in the lineup for Game Two on Saturday night. Gregory Campbell is out for the postseason and recently had successful surgery to repair his broken right fibula.

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