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And then there were 10: Bruins run out of Game 7 magic

Apr 25, 2012, 10:48 PM EDT

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Three of the Boston Bruins’ four series required a Game 7 victory last year, so experience was on their side. If anyone’s shown how much experience can matter – that is to say, little sometimes – it’s playoff rookie/Washington Capitals hero Braden Holtby. He was up to the task in a razor-thin showdown that ultimately ended with a 2-1 Game 7 win in overtime, sending the Bruins to the golf course after a tight 4-3 series.

What happened?

Tim Thomas wasn’t awful by any means, but it’s tough to argue that Braden Holtby didn’t at least equal his output. Even Holtby’s loudest supporters probably didn’t expect him to play as well as the reigning Vezina Trophy winner. Ultimately, Dale Hunter morphed the Capitals into a defense first second and last team and it worked well enough to beat the defending champions.

Who takes the blame?

The Bruins won the 2011 Stanley Cup with an awful power play, but they might look back at it with serious regret after this series. They only went 2-for-21 in this series and did next to nothing on a questionable man advantage late in the third period on Wednesday. Beyond the power play, the Bruins’ best line from last year didn’t do well with Nathan Horton on the sidelines full-time. Milan Lucic and David Krejci only managed three points apiece in seven games, which just wasn’t enough in a low-scoring series.

What will they do about it?

The Bruins’ core is more or less in place, but the biggest area of interesting potential change might be in net. Tuukka Rask needs a new contract while Tim Thomas will enter the final year of his deal in 2012-13. If Rask cannot fit under the cap, GM Peter Chiarelli might have a decision to make.

The bright side of that is if he opts to trade either player, he can add some offensive burst or give Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg a little help on the blueline.

Either way, the Bruins will finish this season with regret, yet they probably won’t feel much pressure to make big changes.

More

And then there were 15: Is Detroit’s dynasty on its last legs?

And then there were 14: Sharks come out flat in playoffs

And then there were 13: Powerhouse Pens fall flat

And then there were 12: Presidents’ Trophy-winning Canucks bounced in Round 1

And then there were 11: Another first-round exit for Blackhawks

  1. sjsharks66 - Apr 25, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    Is there any reason to watch the playoffs anymore? All the interesting offensive teams have been eliminated. Now it’s just going to be 1-0 OT games because everyone is going to play trap type defense.

    • melonheadsdaddy - Apr 25, 2012 at 10:55 PM

      The flyers are still playing dude…best offensive team in NHL the last few weeks…and 52% power play makes it even better…talk about being a homer…jeez brotha change the channel every once in a while…

      • interiorfan - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:24 PM

        The Flyers have to have scoring and lots of it…..their goaltending is questionable on a good day.

    • habsman - Apr 25, 2012 at 10:58 PM

      Go watch wind surfing then.

    • bcjim - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:03 PM

      Well, thats because the refs no longer call obstruction penalties. I’d love for the Caps to play 2009 hockey.

      For reasons unclear to me, Bettman and his cronies don;t seem to want that.

  2. maalea - Apr 25, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    I love that we don’t have to see that giant douche Rene Rancourt anymore!!!

  3. habsman - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    Ahh, 16 year old Laguvulin. Smooth and peaty.

    Thanks Caps, a toast to you!

    BTW, has anyone seen Colie?

  4. govtminion - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:03 PM

    Great series (I mean, seven one-goal-difference games? Wow.), sorry my guys didn’t win it but still not too upset really. Go Nashville from here on!

  5. donfocker89 - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    Let the talk of how many Stanley Cups the Bruins franchise has begin.

  6. bozosforall - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:07 PM

    Boston CHOKES yet again! First the Red Sox last fall, then the Pats this winter, now the Bruins this spring…next the Celtics this summer…or sooner.

    City of CHOKERS

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

    • hockeyflow33 - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:05 AM

      as long as you don’t count the last decade you’re correct. Not sure how a 7 game series of all 1 goal games against an opponent who finished 4 points behind you is choking, but sure

      • bozosforall - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:36 AM

        Let’s count everything, not just the last measly decade. Red Sox…two measly titles in 92 years. Bruins…one measly title in 40+ years. Celtics…one measly title in 25 years. Patriots…three tainted titles in 50+ years. Plenty of CHOKING in between.

      • 2dollarpbrs - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:28 PM

        Hey Bozo you have posted the same thing on every Bruins story

        You are not even a hockey fan & this is a hockey web site just in case you missed that

        Take your hate & un original, poorly thought out comments and CRAM them up your CRAM HOLE

    • bethgoesglobal - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:49 AM

      Dude, did you copy and paste this comment to every story about the Bruins loss on here??

      and where are you from anyway? DC probably has the worst track record around for sports teams! The last team to win a championship was the DC United- the soccer team- and even that was years ago! (unless the women’s basketball team has?)

      Maybe this year will be DC’s year though! (as a lifelong Caps fan and DC sports supporter in general, you always have to believe :-)

      • bozosforall - Apr 26, 2012 at 9:36 AM

        Not from DC, so I don’t really care about the Caps (but good luck to your team). Just glad to see the loudmouthed bandwagon Boston fans have to shut their mouths once again.

  7. Doesnotmatter - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:10 PM

    back 2 back B’s………….nope. Sorry, Boston fans.

    • patsfiend - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:00 AM

      I thought they had a shot at it. Ni dice.

      • Doesnotmatter - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:10 AM

        I’m as surprised as you are. Thought it was gonna be Philly vs Boston.

      • patsfiend - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:16 AM

        Caps defense seemed to really throw off the B’s, for whatever reason… so few crisp entries into the zone. Tough to watch, as a B’s fan, and I think the B’s would have been better off against a team like Philly that would open it up, and drop the gloves.

        Well… they won it last year, and it was awesome, very fulfilling… so I can’t really complain. Cheers.

  8. howardforvezina - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    BLOW THEM UP!

  9. johnnymags21 - Apr 25, 2012 at 11:55 PM

    Personally, I think it’s Bobby V.’s fault. Ever since that bastid showed up, Boston’s had a terrible run. Right, Trigger?

  10. caps247 - Apr 26, 2012 at 6:32 AM

    That’s true, it’s known as the “curse of DC”… But this year is gonna be different. Caps have a chance to get at the cup, Nats are number one in the NL, DC United won a few games, and the Wizards…. Well, they at least completed a game.
    Oh and btw, yesterday marked the second straight day in a row where the Caps, Nats, and Wizards all won on the same day (on the first one DC United won also$

  11. Buffalo Grumblings - Apr 26, 2012 at 10:14 AM

    Kings, Blues, or Predators are the favorites now.

    • melonheadsdaddy - Apr 26, 2012 at 11:46 AM

      your right. The flyers have no shot. especially after bouncing the HEAVILY favored and almighty Pittsburgh Penguins…

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