The Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks will add another chapter to their already epic series tonight when they hit the ice for Game 6 in Boston. Patrice Bergeron and Jonathan Toews will both be in action tonight, so the lineups should return to their original formats as played in Game 1. The Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane has finally started to take over, contributing two goals in G5. The Bruins don’t appear to have an answer to the Hawks’ top line so far. Meanwhile, Boston’s top line has totally checked out of the series; despite Krejčí’s assist the other night. Lucic and Horton have been non-factors when it has mattered most.
This series has all the makings of a 7-game thriller that’ll probably end in overtime Wednesday night. It’s only fitting. The Bruins and Blackhawks have now exchanged two consecutive losses. The Bruins have not lost three games in a row in a while and they need to halt their mini-losing streak now or their season is over. The Blackhawks were really feeling it Saturday night, but they still couldn’t demoralize Boston even after the Bruins lost one of their best players after one shift in the second. The Bruins really started to get going in the third, but a two-goal deficit was too much on the road. The Bruins know they can’t play a 20-minute hockey game and beat a team like the Blackhawks. The lapses by both teams for periods at a time have been costly. The Blackhawks know they have a game to work with, but also know that relying on a Game 7 has its perils.
Swedish-import Carl Söderberg was absolutely phenomenal for the Bruins in Game 5. Joel Quennville will have to adjust to him for the remainder of the series. Söderberg filled in wonderfully for the injured Bergeron. If the lines return to form, Söderberg might get the benefit of better defensive pairings that could raise his play. He is a skilled offensive player who generated some scoring opportunities late in the third period when Boston was storming the wheelhouse trying to tie the game. Julien has seen his team do this before; in 2011 the Bruins won back-to-back elimination games, one of which was in a different country. The Blackhawks are a far better team now than Vancouver was then, but Game 6 should be another classic with a trophy on the line.