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Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara was a late scratch Saturday night against the Canadiens in Game 2 due to severe dehydration, and the B’s had an extremely difficult time adapting to life without their captain. The Canadiens, already armed with a 1-0 series lead, took advantage of the Chara-less B’s defense and scored two goals in the first 2:20 of the opening period.
Patrice Bergeron scored in the second period to cut the deficit to 2-1, but Yannick Weber made it 3-1 with less than three minutes to go in the second to cap the scoring in a 3-1 Habs win.
The Bruins are now down 0-2, having lost both games at home, which means they will have to win at least two games in Montreal in order to win their opening round series. Also working against them: no Bruins team in franchise history has ever won a playoff series after going down 0-2. In all 26 instances in which a Bruins team lost the first two games, they lost the series.
Carey Price was stellar again in net for the Canadiens, finishing with 34 saves in 35 chances. While Tim Thomas is the likely Vezina Trophy winner, Price has completely outclassed him in this series.
Thomas finished with 23 saves in 26 chances. The two goals yielded to Mike Cammalleri and Mathieu Darche (the first McGill University graduate to score an NHL playoff goal since 1953) came within the first three minutes of the game, burying a Bruins team already in a deep hole.
“Let’s be honest: Our team has not played at all close to the way we can,” Bruins coach (not for long…) Claude Julien said. “If they’re going to score some goals, they’re going to need to earn them more than they have. We had to work pretty hard to get that one goal. I don’t think they had to work as hard to get theirs.”
Fight-wise, the Bruins showed some heart, especially in the second period when “Sheriff” Shane Hnidy made an on-ice appearance and brawled with James Wisniewski. The fight was a draw (but it was pretty entertaining, though) and both players, of course, received fighting majors.
Game 3 of the series is Monday night in Montreal. The Bruins will be practicing in Lake Placid, the site of the “Miracle On Ice” in 1980…and the Bruins will need a miracle if they want to come back into this series.