VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Boston Bruins couldn’t have enjoyed the scenery late Saturday night while their team bus crawled through the raucous street party that consumed downtown Vancouver after the Canucks moved halfway to their first NHL title.
With Game 3 looming tonight at TD Garden after a quick cross-continent trip Sunday, the Bruins realize the jam they brought back from Canada isn’t sweet.
Only four teams have rallied from an 0-2 finals deficit in 46 tries. Boston must win four of the next five games to beat the Canucks, the NHL’s best regular-season team and the winner of seven of their past eight playoff games.
“We’ll be disappointed, and we’re allowed to be,” said 43-year-old Mark Recchi, who ended an 11-game goal drought with a power-play score in Game 2. “But we’ll take a lot of positives out of these games. When we get off that plane, we’ll forget all about it.”
The Bruins are still smarting from their late struggles in Game 2, in which they lost for just the third time in 41 games this season when they had a lead after two periods. Vancouver dominated the third period for the second straight finals game, with Daniel Sedin tying it midway through before Alex Burrows won it with his thrilling wraparound goal 11 seconds into overtime.
Coach Claude Julien will remind his Bruins that they largely played well in two one-goal losses. Their defense held the Canucks’ top line scoreless for the first five periods of the series, bullying Daniel and Henrik Sedin into ineffectiveness.
“The positive is we basically lost both games by one goal,” Boston forward David Krejci said. “That hurts, but we know we’re in the game and we know we can do it.”