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Julien: We have home-ice advantage now

by John McGourty
BUFFALO -- Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien thought his team executed his game plan pretty well Saturday in their 5-3 Game 2 win over the Buffalo Sabres at the HSBC Arena.

The Bruins had to win at least one game in Buffalo to have a chance to win their first-round Stanley Cup Playoff series and they accomplished that in the NBC-televised game.

Julien analyzed the victory after the game 2:

Q: Buffalo hadn't surrendered a lead it held going into the third period all season. What did you say to your team between the second and third periods?

Julien: We certainly addressed that and talked about the adjustments we needed to make to get ourselves back in the game. I don't think anybody was down and everybody understood the urgency of what this game meant to our hockey club, hopefully going back home with a split. In the third period, I thought our guys were determined to give it our best.

Q: You said after Game 1 that you needed to create more traffic in front of Ryan Miller. You did that today and got results.

Julien: We keep talking about our team going to the front of the net. I don't think they're thinking much different. They keep putting guys in front of Tuukka Rask. It's a series where there's a lot of respect for both goaltenders and if you want to beat those goaltenders, they can't stop what they can't see. We were definitely better at it today and we got the results.

Q: Why did momentum turn your way in the second period in both games?

Julien: Probably the fact that we haven't been happy with our first period in both games. Tonight, our emotions were getting the better of us in the first period. Because of that, we wound up making some decisions that cost us bad goals. I think it's important for us to bounce back. The other night was to get ourselves back in the game. We were down, 1-0.
I talked about the urgency of wanting to stay in it and the understanding that the next goal is big. Today, if we scored the next goal, we'd be right back into it. Score one goal and hope we get the momentum. That's basically the way we're thinking about it and that's the way we approached it.

Q: How important was that penalty kill after Shawn Thornton took a third-period penalty?

Julien: The penalty kill had to bail us out again and they did a good job. They've done that all year for us where guys stepped up and did a really good job. That includes our goaltender.

Q: What does this win do for your team's confidence?

Julien: It put us back in the series. People will say we have home-ice advantage now, and we do. As I said at the beginning of this series, (our regular-season games against Buffalo) have all been close games, whether in Buffalo or Boston. I don't think either team is going to take anything for granted. We know it's going to be a grind. We have to put this one aside and hopefully learn from what we did wrong and also learn from things we did right and bring it into the next game.

Q: Michael Ryder has struggled this year. Do you think this game will help his confidence?

Julien: I think that last game in Washington was good for him. He's one of those guys who's also been disappointed in his overall season. We had him score some big goals for us tonight. Our fourth line, particularly (Steve) Begin and (Daniel) Paille did a great job for us on the penalty kill and giving us some good shifts as well. You need to rely on everybody and I thought we could rely on almost everybody tonight.

Q: At the end of the first period, Zdeno Chara dumped Tyler Ennis into the Boston bench. When he came back out for the second period, Chara seemed to play with more confidence.

Julien: Right there was the perfect example of our needing to be in control of our emotions and make sure we didn't run out of position to make the big hit. He obviously sent a message, which was right at the buzzer. There was no reason to worry there. Nothing was going to happen but that big hit sent a message and then he came back and played solid from there on in.

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