BOSTON — Something sure felt different here at the TD Garden last night.
Your Boston Bruins didn’t commit the several standard egregious errors in the third period to blow a good thing.
Is that the “switch” everybody has been talking about, the one champions can flick on and off at a moment’s notice?
Even coach Claude Julien reiterated after the convincing 4-1 win over Toronto Maple Leafs — the Bruins outshot the Leafs 40-20 — what he said before the game, that “this is a new season” and “we’ve been here before,” and that the team has put the disappointing finish to the regular season in the past.
Or was it something more obvious, like David Krejci was finally the best player on the ice?
While everyone seems to be overly concerned about several Bruins issues over the last month, including Milan Lucic’s effort, Tuukka Rask’s third period goals allowed, Claude Julien’s obsession with defense, the fourth line, the inept power play and the latest fill-ins/no-names on defense, maybe we’ve missed the ball on the Bruins.
Maybe the Bruins successes and failures hinge on the consistency (or inconsistency) of the Bruins’ most skilled player, Krejci.
At least last night’s dominating performance makes one wonder. The stat sheet said Krejci, voted the game’s No. 1 star, had a goal and two assists. But he was seemingly inches away from two goals and four assists.
Why does he have only 91 goals and 218 assists (309 points) in 424 regular season games? Better yet, why isn’t Krejci one of the top 10 players in the world?
The David Krejci Fan Club was out in force after last night’s playoff opener.
“I go against him every day,” said Bruins goalie, Tuukka Rask. “When he’s on top of his game, he sucks guys in. And then he’s able to give guys the puck in space. And then he also finds ways to score ... He’s a great player, yes, great.”