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Second Round

Bruins use extra day to rest, improve power play before Game 3

Playoff series with Blue Jackets tied after split in Boston

by Matt Kalman / NHL.com Correspondent

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins have an extra day off before the Eastern Conference Second Round resumes with Game 3 against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS), and that could benefit them in more ways than one.

The Bruins need the rest after a 3-2 double-overtime loss in Game 2 on Saturday and a seven-game first-round series win against the Toronto Maple Leafs that concluded two days before the second round started.

 

[RELATED: Complete Bruins vs. Blue Jackets series coverage]

 

"It came at a good time for us to get the two days between games," Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said Sunday. "We had a seven-game series, obviously high-intensity, back and forth, so it takes an emotional toll as well. 

"I think last night [in Game 2] just our natural fitness level came through for the guys to be able to play that long, but I think mentally we made some mistakes that we wouldn't make if we were a little more fresh."

The best-of-7 series against the Blue Jackets is tied 1-1.

Video: Blue Jackets even series with Game 2 win in 2OT

The Bruins did not practice or travel to Columbus on Sunday. Cassidy's advice before they return to the rink Monday?

"[Play] Fortnite. Fortnite all day, just get to bed early," Cassidy said. "[Boston] Celtics are on today, aren't they? Watch the Celtics [NBA playoff game], should be a great game."

The day away from hockey should help the Bruins mentally and physically.

"Physically there's bumps and bruises everywhere, every team has them, and I think our locker room has the ability, the capability to play through those and with those more than anyone," Bruins defenseman Torey Krug said. "We have some warriors in here that can withstand that. But the emotional toll that it takes, it's great to have this time off and you know hopefully we can use that to our advantage."

The off day also gives Boston the opportunity to make some fixes to its power play. After going 7-for-16 against the Maple Leafs, the Bruins are 1-for-8 against the Blue Jackets, scoring once in four opportunities in Game 2.

"Just looking at different parts of the game where you could make a difference, and that was one, especially in a tight-checking game when neither generated a lot of offense 5-on-5," Cassidy said. "So that's when you got to make hay [on the power play]. They did on theirs, we didn't on ours. Yeah, we got a goal that helped us. And the number looks good, so you're 25 percent. But in the big picture, No. 1 unit [didn't] generate much either game on it. So we want to make sure we put it back."

Cassidy said the Bruins will consider swapping personnel between their two power-play units, with David Krejci, David Pastrnak, Marcus Johansson and Jake DeBrusk all candidates to be moved around. Boston might want Krug and Brad Marchand to more interchanging of positions once the Bruins enter the Columbus zone.

"But as far as I'm concerned, it just comes down to good, old-fashioned hard work," Krug said. "They have guys that are working hard and they get paid to be penalty killers, and we have guys that get paid to score goals and be on the power play. So we have one extra guy on the ice than they do, just go to work and we've got to execute. I think we're pretty close."

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