BOSTON – The B's Milan Lucic has won a championship, but it’s not the same championship he and his Boston Bruins are chasing in their 2011 Stanley Cup run.
|Lucic shoots a puck during hockey practice at TD Garden in Boston, Thursday, May 12, 2011, as they prepare for their NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference finals against the Tampa Bay Lightning which begins Saturday. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola) |
Lucic lead the Vancouver Giants to the Memorial Cup in 2007.
That run to junior hockey's championship included the shift of a lifetime, in which he recorded three hits, a fight and a 163,000-hit YouTube video.
“I’ve only done it in the junior ranks. I remember how fun it was,” Lucic said on Friday after the B's final full practice before the begin their series with Tampa Bay on Saturday night.
While his Memorial Cup MVP trophy looks good on his wall, Lucic is looking to add to his collection with a Stanley Cup ring.
The Bruins have advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 1992, and Lucic and his teammates have their eyes on the ultimate prize.
“This is something that we have been working towards as a team and an organization, to get to this point," said Lucic. "It took three tries in the second round to get here.
“We know how hard it has been to get to this point and it’s going to be that much harder to take that next step.”
The Bruins dismantled the Montreal Canadiens over seven games, then skated over the Philadelphia Flyers in four to make it to tomorrow's juncture -- Game 1 against the Tampa Bay Lighting is tomorrow.
“We can’t wait to see what they are going to do. We have to keep going with what we had going against Philadelphia,” Lucic said.
What the B's had against Philadelphia was a team determined and focused on winning. After potting zero goals against Montreal, what Lucic had against Philadelphia was an offensive burst.
Lucic had 2-3-5 totals in the four games against the Flyers and said that now, "There is less pressure.
"It was tough to get out of that slump, but now I honestly feel even in practice it’s more confident when I get that much in those areas where I know I can score."
As his line goes, Lucic goes. With linemates Nathan Horton and David Krejci consistently lighting the lamp, it was only a matter of time before Lucic got going. The time and space Lucic and Horton given themselves with their big bodies and physical play, combined with the play making abilities of Krejci, has been a winning recipe for the Bruins all season.
“Personally, I think we just need to do what we did with what made us successful. I think we played with a lot of speed, we were going forward with the puck, making plays and we were being strong on the puck,” Lucic said.
“That’s exactly what we need to do as a line to be successful.”
Clearly, the Bruins aren’t satisfied with making it this far and the hunger for a championship is apparent in Boston’s dressing room.
“At the end of the day you want to have no regrets and say you did everything you can to help your team win,” Lucic said. “You can sit here and talk the talk, but it means nothing if you go out there and don’t do what you preach."