1. Set the tone Physically
Bring the body. This is not the time to skate lightfooted. These are the Stanley Cup Playoffs and the timid gets to go home. Just ask the New York Rangers or any of the other seven teams that get to watch the rest of the playoffs from anywhere other than the bubbles in Toronto and Edmonton.
The Carolina Hurricanes need to go into this game today fully caffeinated and buzz the bruins back on their heels from the first whistle. Let them know that they have eaten their Wheaties this morning and will not back down from the challenge of sending them back to Boston.
The Bruins will most likely have the same gameplan going into this one. They don’t want to go home to Boston. I can’t blame them one bit. I wouldn’t want to leave a safe virus-free bubble in Toronto to go to Boston. Pandemic or not.
Carolina needs to come out onto the ice flying and throw whatever game plan Boston had out the window. That means excellent forechecking and backchecking. That means whoever has the puck is never comfortable unless they are wearing a hurricane warning flag on their jersey.
That means that whatever attempts at creating an offensive attack gets blown up because of mistakes made by Boston or by a Carolina Hurricane actively engaging the puck-handler.
That all said, there also has to be a line drawn. We already have seen how tilted the ice can be when it comes to the vision of the boys in black and white. The Bruins have only scored on the powerplay and have been atrocious on equal strength since the end of game one.
That is due to the excellent defensive talents of the depth of this roster. Don’t expect them to always bail out this team. Win today by bringing the body, but by also keeping the officiating out of the conversation.