TORONTO – The Boston Bruins are learning that one line can’t win a playoff series by itself.
Boston failed to close out its series with Toronto again, managing only one goal for the second straight game in a 2-1 loss to the Maple Leafs, who have now tied the best-of-seven matchup 3-3.
Game 7 goes Monday night in Boston.
“If you only score one goal, a lot of times you end up on the wrong side,” said defenceman Dennis Seidenberg. “Tonight, we just didn’t score enough to win.”
“We have to be more determined to get pucks and bodies in front of the net and just find those rebounds.”
Boston’s top unit of Milan Lucic—who scored the only Bruins goal Sunday—David Krejci and Nathan Horton has done almost all of the Bruins’ scoring in the playoffs. They have nine goals, 24 points and a plus-23 rating.
The rest of the Bruins forwards have just three goals, 10 points and a minus–11 rating.
During the regular season, Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin were the most prolific line for Boston. They combined for 44 goals and 100 points, but so far in the playoffs, they have just one goal, three points and a minus–2 rating.
Seguin has 27 shots, tied for third-most in the post-season, but has zero points.
“Being frustrated right now isn’t going to help,” Bergeron said. “It’s about being determined to find ways to put it in. It’s all about tomorrow now.”
“(I told my linemates) keep plugging away, keep doing the little things and keep things simple. Tonight they did that and we had some good looks. Bottom line is we got to help our team and put the puck in the net.”
The third line of Rich Peverley, Chris Kelly and Jaromir Jagr has one goal, four points and a minus–9 rating. While the Bruins’ fourth line of Daniel Paille, Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton has one goal, three points and a zero rating.
“It’s about finding a way, finding that goal,” Bergeron said. “We obviously didn’t do that.”
Head coach Claude Julien refused to comment on his lines after the game, but he did cite the main problem.
“Puck management,” he said. “We talked about it before the game. We talked about it after the first period and I didn’t think our puck management was very good. That sometimes means being strong on the puck, making the right plays, shooting versus over-passing.
“I didn’t think it was very good and as I said to our players after the game, we’ve been a Jekyll and Hyde hockey team all year and that’s what you’re seeing right now. I think it’s important for us to bring the good Bruins team to the table for Game 7.”