Monday, June 06, 2011

Heading to Boston, Game Three Preview for the Pool

Only one night off in the Stanley Cup Final on Sunday, bringing us to Game Three, going Monday night in Boston.  The Bruins are looking to try and get back into this series against the Canucks and they will try to use home-ice advantage to do so.

The Bruins have not been completely outclassed in the first two games of this series, they've managed to skate with the Canucks and maintain the up-tempo style of play.  In order for the Bruins to be successful in Game Three, they will have to get even more bodies to the net, force more scrambles in front of the Canucks' crease and make life far more difficult for Roberto Luongo.

Of course, the game plan shouldn't change for the Canucks, but managing their own expectations going into Game Three will be the toughest thing to accomplish.  If they can keep the forecheck and neutral zone pressure up, turnovers will continue to make for more puck possession.  The goal for the Canucks to generate more offense in the third game will be backdoor and/or diagonal zone passes, keeping Tim Thomas moving from side to side.

Boston isn't quite out of this series yet, but if they get put behind the 8-ball right away (going down three games), they will be in a lot of trouble.

River Dogs
All She
on the
289 points-0 points-16-27-27-27-29-29-29-30
Daniel Sedin (1)xxxxxxxxxx
Henrik Sedin (2)xxxxxxxx
Ryan Kesler (3)xx
Kevin Bieksa (10)x
Roberto Luongo (12)xxxxxxxxx
Patrice Bergeron (13)xx
David Krejci (14)xxx
Milan Lucic (15)x
Nathan Horton (16)xxx
Michael Ryder (18)xx
Brad Marchand (19)xxx
Tomas Kaberle (20)xx
Zdeno Chara (21)xxxxx
Johnny Boychuk (23)x
Tim Thomas (24)xxxxxxxx

It's a little bit of a new look to the top ten teams in the pool, as Jack_Bit_Gary jumps into the fray, which put Kevin Bieksa and Milan Lucic on the table, two players that could possibly shift the standings a little bit more.  Jack_Bit_Gary is only 3 points out of the money and with anywhere between two and five games left to go in the series, his different look to the end of the year.  The tipping point for this team will be if Henrik Sedin starts piling on the points again, it might not be such a good omission from his team.

Not much separates the money spots from the chasing teams, 6 points between 4th and 14th spot, all of these teams having six players as well, most of which are likely the same.  I'm sure Superstar and Granny Smith are hoping that the series ends sooner, rather than later, not giving any of the chasing teams a real chance to catch them in the end.

In this final round of play, Sloppy Seconds leads the entire pool with 14 points, thanks to having Daniel Sedin, Alex Burrows and Roberto Luongo for Vancouver and Patrice Bergeron, Michael Ryder and Zdeno Chara for Boston.  Unfortunately, this team is a way back in 42nd place, a testament to making sure you have all the teams sorted out in the playoffs, not just the team in the finals.

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