BOSTON – It’s not everyday that you get a chance to play in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Bruin Milan Lucic plans to make the most of the opportunity.
|Boston Bruins players, from left, left wing Milan Lucic, defenseman Andrew Ference and center David Krejci deplane after arriving at Hansom Field in Bedford, Mass. Thursday, May 26, 2011. The Bruins host Game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs Eastern Conference final against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola) |
The Bruins road to Game 7 began with an opening series loss in Boston to go down 1-0. They then won two games in a row to take the 2-1 series lead before Tampa game back to tie it up. The B’s then won Game 5 and had a chance to close out the series Wednesday night in Tampa, but the Bolts didn’t go down easy, forcing a Game 7 with the 5-4 victory.
Tonight, it’s all or nothing.
“You never know what can happen in the future. You look at myself, as young as I am even, you never know if you’ll get another chance like this,” Lucic said.
“And especially for myself, it’s a chance, you win a game here and you get to play in your hometown for the Stanley Cup.”
The Vancouver Canucks await the winner of tonight’s game. The Stanley Cup with kick off on Wednesday, June 1 in Vancouver.
But first, the Bruins have to take care of business tonight.
“This is almost as exciting as it gets, and I think for us, we’re excited for the opportunity and the challenge tonight. Obviously it’s a big game,” Lucic said. “We want to go out there and have fun and make the most of it and hopefully come out on top.”
The TD Garden has sold out through the entire regular season and postseason thus far, and it’s sure to be a rocking atmosphere when the Bruins take the ice tonight.
Lucic would expect nothing less from the B's fan base.
“You’re excited for these big games, but you don’t want to be over excited. Thinking about it you get the butterflies in your stomach, obviously it’s a good nervous feeling,” said Lucic. “Again, you don’t want to be afraid of the challenge, you want to embrace it and enjoy it.”
The Bruins were disappointed they weren’t able to close the series out in Game 6, despite a David Krejci hat trick and a plethora of pressure in Tampa’s zone in the closing minutes of the game. Boston will look to feed off the momentum they gathered in the final minutes of Wednesday night’s game to begin tonight’s match-up.
“We applied a lot of pressure, we saw an opportunity and we started to play with that confidence that we need in order to succeed and it’s what it’s going to all come down to tonight,” Lucic said.
“Which team is more confident, which team is more determined, which team is more willing to go out there and pay the price to win this game.”
Lucic has said all the right things, but words won’t win tonight’s hockey game for his teammates and himself. Instead, the left-winger plans to walk to walk when the puck drops.
“In the end what I say or words don’t mean anything right now. Our actions are going t speak louder than anything right now,” he said.
“You have to go out there and have fun, no regrets and lay it all out there on the line.”