Apr 20, 2014, 12:23 PM EDT
The Boston Bruins want to play a physical game against the Red Wings and engage them verbally. Detroit doesn’t want to risk responding in kind.
Boston converted on 21.7% of its regular season power-play opportunities, which was good for third place in the NHL. Detroit was just middle-of-the-road when it came to killing penalties and scoring with the man advantage, so the Red Wings realize that they’re unlikely to win this series if it’s decided by special teams.
“Against a team like this, which was so lethal on the power play, you want to stay out of the box,” forward Justin Abdelkader said. “We’ll do what we can to try to do that and play five-on-five. That’s where we’re at our best.”
Detroit managed to stay disciplined in Game 1 on Friday. While the Bruins outhit the Red Wings 34-26, Detroit only committed one penalty en route to a 1-0 victory. If the Red Wings can keep that up throughout the series, then one of the Bruins’ biggest advantages will be marginalized.
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