Wednesday night's triple-OT marathon between Boston and Chicago was a game for the ages.
By: Scott LaCascia
It took a little more than 112 minutes and two and a half overtimes after regulation to decide the first game of the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals on Wednesday night, as the Chicago Blackhawks edged the Boston Bruins 4-3 in triple OT. The Bruins led early and throughout, riding a strong performance from winger Milan Lucic (2 goals, 1 assist, +1). Boston had leads of 2-0 and 3-1, the latter as late as six minutes into the final period after Patrice Bergeron's power play goal. The tide turned when rookie defenceman Torey Krug's ill-advised pass across ice was picked off then fired past Tuukka Rask by Dave Bolland to cut the lead to 3-2. Chicago tied the score a little more than four minutes later when Johnny Oduya's shot deflected off the skate of Andrew Ference and eluded Rask to knot the game at 3-all. Neither team would score for almost another hour (59 minutes, 54 seconds) of ice time, until a shot by the Blackhawks defenceman Michal Rozsival's shot was deflected first by the stick of Dave Bolland, then off the knee of Andrew Shaw, as it passed Rask for the game-winner. The Bruins not only lost the game but lost forward Nathan Horton and his status in uncertain for the rest of the series with an "upper-body injury" that he suffered during the first overtime period.
Game Two on Saturday is obviously important for both teams but it may be even more critical for the Boston Bruins. Two years ago, they lost the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals in Vancouver, but roared back to win in seven games. A loss Saturday night will put the Bruins back in the familiar postion of falling behind 0-2 in a seven game series, and with injuries this postseason to Gregory Campbell, Dennis Seidenberg, Andrew Ference and now Nathan Horton, the Bruins desperately need a split in Chicago. If last night is any indication, this should be a very close matchup and one worth watching.