And that is how you change the momentum: The Bruins use home-ice to advance on the Canucks.

The big question going into last night's game for me, was this: will Luongo continue his past patterns and allow the Bruins to take the momentum? History has a way of repeating itself, and in this case it sure as hell did. I find it interesting that while I watch, or when I reflect on the past 2 games, I look at it as Vancouver losing rather than Boston winning. Maybe it is because they are the ones losing the momentum and advantage in the series, but maybe it has more to do with the Canucks getting beat at their own game, or their mental condition, or more particularly Luongo's mental condition.

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The fact of the matter is that Vancouver has been outscored 14-5 in the series. That is no where near close, it is actually more like domination. This doesn't stop the Canucks from making excuses or thinking that they are the better team. Over the last 2 games, they have been outscored 12-1 regardless of outshooting the Bruins in both contests and some of them see no reason to look at goaltending or mistakes being made in their games. It would seem that Tim Thomas is rising to the occasion and seising the claim that this is his year, not the Canuck's.
This is what we hear from the Canucks, "We just have to start testing him more because he's leaky and pucks go through him"(Bieksa). "For whatever reason, ours are lying in the crease or hopping over sticks. Theirs are going in" (Schneider). So, 79 shots in 2 games isn't enough of a test and the "leaky" goalie is easy to score on. Okay, so your saying it is the Sedin's fault, right? There is apparently no logical reason that Vancouver's shots aren't going in and Boston's are according to them. In both of these statements, the Canucks have managed to take credit away from Thomas and keep the finger off of Luongo, because goaltending has nothing to do with where this series is.
Most of the comments made by Vancouver avoid placing any blame on Luongo. He is fragile after all, but when I look back at the goals scored on him I see no reason not to and I also take no credit away from the Boston offense for finishing their shots. In fact I give them a ton of credit for the continuos barrage on Luongo in game 3 because they knew he was down and they could hurt his ability to make save in the coming games. Then I give them credit for finding the holes in game 4. They have the killer mentality right now and that is a big part of it.
Leaving Luongo in to allow 8 goals was just plain bad coaching. Another example of Vigneault's wonderful coaching abilities. But lets look at the goals allowed in the last game. The first was a breakaway goal placed through Luo's 5-hole by Beverley. The 2nd was a "Bickell-esk" wrist shot from the top of the circle by Ryder. Marchand was left all lone in front of the net because Sedin was trying to sell a penalty and lifted a shot over Luongo's shoulder that he probably could have poke checked away. The 4th goal was the result of Luo miss-playing the puck into an attacking Bruin's body and allowing it to deflect into the net. And yet Luongo says this, "it was a tough one. A few goals went off something, we are not getting the breaks." No buddy, one puck went off of something and you put it there. Maybe Ryder's was helped a bit, but that puck was still very stoppable.
One of the Sedins acknowledged Thomas' performance by saying that he "is standing on his head and winning games for them." There is some truth in that, but again, I don't want to take any credit away from how the Bruins are playing as a team. Thomas is not scoring any goals and that is where the huge difference is in this series as of now. There has been a definite reaction to the Horton hit and it has caused a scrappy, gritty, and sometimes ugly game. Boston it seems, is pretty good at this style and Vancouver asked for it.
The Bruins also started cashing in on Vancouver's mistakes. All 4 goals were after someone on Vancouver screwed up or misplayed a puck. I mentioned it already, but I think watching Sedin try and sell that penalty behind the net while Marchand walked right up to Luongo all alone was extremely telling. First: this diving crap has got to stop and it goes for both teams now. The officials need to hand out an unsportsmanlike to someone and make a statement. Second: it shows how Vancouver is losing it; and Third: how the Bruins are taking it.
The shining light for Vancouver is that the series turns back to home where they will try to regain momentum. This leads us to the question of the today: will Vancouver respond and more importantly, will Luongo respond. When the Blackhawks found themselves back in Vancouver after winning a decisive game 4 in Chicago this year, Vancouver sure as hell did not respond in that game 5. Only time will tell if this Vancouver team has what it really takes to be champions. Im just enjoying the ride.

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  • HH and all,

    Rule #1 of being a nuck fan: When they win, it's because how great they are.
    Rule #2 of being a nuck fan: When the lose, it's never the fact they were out played, The refs didn't call enough penalties against the other team. The league is a grand conspiracy against them, etc...

    BW

  • I won't count the Nucks out until the Bruins are raising the cup. I still believe that in general, Vancouver will win close games and that the Bruins need to come out and get two quick ones to both take the fan base out and sow some doubt. Boston may grind and punish, but they are also skilled. What I love about this series is that both teams play a very different style and the team that get's to play the way it wants to has been the winner in all four game. What I really like is that the Bruins right now have confidence are not the least bit frightened by anyone on the Canucks. I don't think the Nucks are scared of the Bruins per se, but they do not want to play Boston's game of grit and scrum, especially the Sedins. Vancouver plays like a team only when things seem to be going their way. Honestly, I still think they are probably the better team overall but that don't mean they can't again get spanked in front of their home crowd.

    I agree with BW completely. Early on, I saw some Nucks fan say that there team was good enough to play any style presented to them; I think that's been pretty soundly debunked. At some point, I think Boston is going to have to steal a close one. If it's close tomorrow and that's the game they steal, I think Van more of less rolls over. If it goes to seven, I think Van wins. So will Vancouver the city burn win or lose?

    Scored the game winning shoutout goal tonight in the second of back to back games. It's rec league, but god I love this game.

  • Typical Nucks win. Keep it close, score a crap goal late, chip, trap and collapse to run the clock out. And of course, the game winner comes from a bitch like LaPierre although I will grudgingly admit he is having a hell of a series. I still think it comes down to Boston needing to steal a close game. Unless they can now put up two blowouts, it seems like Vancouver's cup to lose. Bastards.

  • In reply to VegasHawksFan:

    Nice call on the Nucks taking the close games, Vegas.

    I still can't believe Boston put 12 up on the board in two home games, but managed just two in their three on the road.

    Also can't believe Tanner Glass fanned on the open net in the 2nd. What a complete choke.

    BTW, congrats on the game winner, Vegas. As a D-man myself, I've had limited chances for late-game heroics, but have had a few in my time. No better feeling.

  • In reply to iplagitr:

    You gotta feel for Thomas. Two 1-0 SC losses.

    BTW, guys, yesterday was the full year anniversary of the "hawks cup win. Still have the game on my DVR.

  • In reply to iplagitr:

    Ugggh is about I can say about the game.

    On a happier note, caught two stockers and three natives. Had the stockers for dinner and the natives are back in Fall Creek...

    BW

  • In reply to iplagitr:

    Well, I'm sure by now everyone heard "the comment" from Luongo about how Thomas would have stopped that goal if he played......like Luongo does. In a way, I have to give the Canucks credit for one thing, after they absolutely get their balls kicked in because they flat out quit in a game, they are able to take a victory from a shitty goal and reclaim their superiority and talk shit. Throughout this playoff run, the stars of Vancouver have frequently been shown up and shut down and Luongo has been absolutely embarrassed AT HOME as well as away. And yet, there he is at the podium with the penultimate look of "I'm better then all of you".

    Unless the Bruins can win a close game, I still don't see them hoisting the cup. Still, if they can come back tomorrow and put one more ass whipping on Luongo before it's all done, I will be a happy camper.

  • In reply to VegasHawksFan:

    Did you actually read the whole thing about RL or just the part about the goal?... just in case you didnt...

    "It's not hard if you're playing in the paint," Luongo said. "It's an easy save for me, but if you're wandering out and aggressive like he does, that's going to happen. He might make some saves that I won't, but in a case like that, we want to take advantage of a bounce like that and make sure we're in good position to bury those."

    To me it is quite clear he is saying he would make that save because HE PLAYS in the paint while TT will make other saves he is uncapable of making because he plays so aggressive... it really is just getting blown out of proportion because news outlets are only posting half not the whole thing...

    And if you were to actually hear the question... he is speaking regarding the play it really didnt have anything to do making fun of TT..
    But hey... it is not like any of you would really care... your minds are already poisoned :)

  • In reply to vocessaobostas:

    Yeah, i watched the clip of him saying it and read the transcript and it doesn't change my opinion of him. You ask a fair question and then jump on your own predetermined soapbox that our minds are poisoned and suggest we dont' care about the details. Gee, that's open minded.

    I don't think he's making fun of Thomas at all. Instead, after getting his head handed to him for two straight games he's telling everyone to fuck off because he's good dammit. Pretty cool his home arena cheers when he get's pulled after his team AGAIN quit in front of him. Not liking the Nucks has not prevented me from seeing their skill and ability. Regardless, they act like classless bitches.

  • In reply to VegasHawksFan:

    Key to victory, 4 straight PPs and no goals for the Bs. It was over then.

    Not that we need to see this, but the wife showed me today and it is fairly tasteful. Apparently there are several different endings.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-WQx2N1aXA

  • In reply to fourfeather:

    I like this one a lot more

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJqlXkkNuc8&NR=1&feature=fvwp

  • Wow, Karma indeed. It's an easy punch line, but yeah, if Luongo comes out of the paint a little to cut the angle, that first goal doesn't go in. Talk about what would have been an easy save for Thomas. For once though, I will give the Canucks credit for something, they did not quit. When they have a lead in the series or it's not on the line, they give up. When time is running out to win the cup, they finally showed up for a full sixty minutes despite being down. Make no mistake though, Luongo cost them that game and he's likely to come up big in game seven......if the Bruins don't score first.

    Both teams seem challenged to come back from even one goal deficits. If I'm Boston, I'm thinking that for game seven it's got to be man to man coverage and you've got to keep hitting. Vancouver seems to be able to score only one of two ways and both are variations of catching Thomas not being able to move left to right quick enough. They have found a flaw and they have found a play that works (point bankshot behind the net to come out the other side). But, when Boston keeps track of where guys are they shut it down. It's been said by much better hockey minds then mine, Boston has got to score first. Whichever team scores first is going to get that boost of confidence and probably win.

    Thomas has been amazing.

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