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Time for the Game

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
BOSTON - Whatever war of words has developed over the last few weeks won't matter at 7:00 p.m. and, prior to the Bruins and Canadiens Thursday night contest in TD Garden, the B's players emphasized that they are only interested in what is going to be done tonight on the ice.

Boston Bruins left wing Milan Lucic (17) puts the puck in the net past Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price (31 during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Boston, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
"I think the focus, even before the war of words, is to get the win," said forward Milan Lucic to a large crowd of journalists in the hallway leading to the Bruins locker room.

"As of right now we're just focused on getting a big win here. And we know it's a big night for us in this last game of this series."

Asked what he expects out of the on ice match-up, Lucic said, "To be honest, a lot of what we saw last game.

"I think the Montreal Canadiens are just focused on playing and getting two points and I think our focus should be the exact same.

"I don't think it should be on going after anyone or, you know, making a statement by going out there and beating them up. The real way we can get to them is if we beat them on the scoreboard," he said.

Lucic's coach held similar sentiments.

"We’re here to play hockey," said Boston Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien.

"That’s all there is to it. And this he said, she said stuff -- soap opera -- I’m not interested in answering those kinds of questions.

"In two hours from now we have a big game to be played and it’s a big two points for both teams. So that’s what my focus is on right now," he said.

Forward Tyler Seguin, speaking before one of the most anticipated games of his young NHL career, said, "I think it's just going to be a hard game. We're both [teams] looking for the two points tonight, so it should be a good one.

"I think they are going to be playing desperate hockey just like us. I think it's going to be just like a playoff game.

"As we've seen in the standings right now, it's us versus them," he said.

Veteran defenseman Andrew Ference was asked if he expected Montreal to seek retribution.

"With winning, yeah," he said.

"This time of the season, [with] the tight race for the playoffs, as hockey players we all know that the ultimate revenge is winning and, you know, trying to catch your opponents in the standings.

"So, I think they're a determined group over there, to do that," he said.

But the B's are just as determined --to remain focused and to add to their lead in the Northeast Division.

"Inside the dressing room...good teams know how to, even in the biggest games, approach it just like another game," said Ference.

"It really is two points. And in the course of any game, whether it is us versus Florida, us versus Montreal, us against a Western team, you approach them as a hard-fought two points."
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