The Boston Bruins, their backs against the wall and their egos on the floor, stood tall Monday night in the TD Garden.
Needing a win to make a series out of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Bruins delivered a proverbial haymaker, routing the Vancouver Canucks, 8-1, to narrow the gap in this best-of-seven series, 2-1. Game 4 is tonight in the Garden. The fight is on.
Game 3 was low-lighted by Aaron Rome’s late hit on Nathan Horton in the first period. The hit was heinous, and it garnered a four-game suspension by the NHL. Norton is out for the rest of the playoffs, so the tradeoff is anything but fair — Horton is a first-line right wing, Rome a No. 5 or 6 defenseman.
Still, the Bruins’ effort in Game 3 was uplifting. They shook off a tense first period by scoring four times in the second period. By the midway mark of the third period, the tired and shaky Canucks looked like they traveled to Boston by row boat. The B’s were relentless and unforgiving. It was great to watch.
It won’t be long before we find out if the B’s built up any emotional and/or physical equity in their Game 3 beatdown. Game 4 is hours away. And who knows, by 11 p.m. tonight the Bruins could be two wins away from bringing the Stanley Cup back to Boston.