If the Bruins hope to get back in their second round series with the Canadiens, they have to figure out how to get a lead and build on it, instead of allowing Montreal to score and having to fight their way back.
The Bruins tied Game 1 after falling behind by scores of 2-0 and 3-2, but lost in double overtime.
They completed the comeback in Game 2, scoring four unanswered in the final 9:04 of the third period to split the first two games of the series in Boston.
The Bruins fell behind 3-0 in the second period of Game 3 and cut it to 3-2 with 2:12 to play, but were unable to come back again and lost the game 4-2.
The Bruins defense suffered breakdowns in Game 3 that led to two breakaway chances for the Canadiens, who cashed in on both of them to help give Montreal the 3-0 lead.
On the first breakaway, P.K. Subban had just left the penalty box, and Dougie Hamilton and Patrice Bergeron (who had been playing the point on the power play), didn’t realize Subban was behind them and allowed Lars Eller to drift into the neutral zone and swing a cross ice pass right to Subban, who needed just one move to fake out Tuukka Rask and score.
On the second, Andrej Meszaros had a shot blocked, and he and Johnny Boychuk failed to get back in time to corral a streaking Dale Weise, who took a pass from Danny Briere and skated freely into the Bruins zone, beating Rask to make it 3-0.
Of the 204:17 minutes through three games, the Bruins have only led for a total of 11:39.That is just not going to get it done against a very formidable Canadiens team that, unlike the Bruins, has been able to take advantage of the chances that they have gotten.
One major issue the Bruins will have to change is their play through the first two periods of games. In the series, the B’s have a total of two goals through the first 40 minutes, and have trailed by scores of 2-0, 2-1, and 3-1 going into the third period of each, respectively.
Having to push while playing from behind, the Bruins seemed to run out of gas in Game 3 and, despite Jarome Iginla’s late goal, never really seemed to have a chance.
The teams will meet again back at the Bell Centre on Thursday night for Game 4, and while stranger things certainly have happened, it certainly has the feel of a “must win” for the Bruins if they want any chance of extending their 2013-14 season past this second round playoff series.