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Bruins look to hand Canadiens first playoff loss

by Matt Kalman



(Montreal leads best-of-7 series 1-0)

Big story: The Presidents' Trophy-winning Boston Bruins are back in the same position they were in during their first-round series with the Detroit Red Wings. Against Detroit, Boston lost a one-goal game at home to open the series, then started a four-game winning streak with a home win in Game 2.

They'd like to do the same against the Montreal Canadiens, who took Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Second Round series Thursday. The Canadiens are the hottest team in hockey with five straight victories to open the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Team Scope:

Canadiens: Montreal's 4-3 double-overtime win in Game 1 on Thursday was dramatic, but it wasn't a victory coach Michel Therrien will be storing in his archives as an example of how his team should play.

The Bruins outshot the Canadiens 51-33 and Boston had 98 shot attempts to Montreal's 58. If not for goaltender Carey Price's 48 saves, defenseman P.K. Subban would not have had a chance to score his power-play winner. Therrien said there are many areas of the Canadiens' game that need work.

Montreal, which won the first two games of the 2011 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in Boston but lost the series in seven, are expecting to face a revenge-minded Bruins team in Game 2.

"It's great that we won, but listen, I have played against these guys more than a few times over the past couple of years and in the playoffs. The one thing I can tell you is this is a resilient team," Subban said. "That's not something that you can say about every team, but against these guys I have to give them credit. They always battle back. They always find a way to persevere."

Bruins: Boston's main focus in the aftermath of the loss and all its missed scoring chances has been to not panic and to avoid building up Price into some mythic puck-stopping god. The Bruins tried to take the positive out of their ability to dictate the play for most of Game 1.

"I think we stay with it. I think after that happens, and like I say you tip your hat to [Price]," forward Jarome Iginla said. "But we feel if we get those same chances and that same net-front presence we'll find ways to get it in."

Who's hot: Subban had two goals in Game 1 and has seven points in five games and a four-game point streak. Canadiens forward Rene Bourque had a goal in the first game against Boston and has four in five games. … Bruins defenseman Torey Krug scored his second goal of the playoffs Thursday and has a three-game point streak.

Injury report: Montreal forward Alex Galchenyuk (lower body) has started skating. … Boston forward Chris Kelly (back) and defensemen Adam McQuaid (quad) and Dennis Seidenberg (ACL/MCL) remain out.

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