“I’ve been in that situation before and it’s no fun,” he said. “I’m thankful I can go out tomorrow night and help my team.”
The Penguins could certainly use it after the Bruins took away the open space the Penguins enjoyed during first and second round wins over the New York Islanders and Ottawa Senators. Whenever Pittsburgh did generate some momentum, Rask found a way to get a glove, a pad or a stick on whatever the Penguins threw his way.
Having a handful of shots clang off the posts helped. So did a defense that made things uncomfortable for Sidney Crosby and the rest of the star-laden Penguins.
“Tuukka stood tall and made a lot of saves at the right time,” Boston’s Brad Marchand said. “We just want to make sure we collapse low and try to take away lanes.”
Something the Penguins failed to do against Krejci. The NHL’s leading scorer during the postseason pushed his point total to 19 with his sixth and seventh goals of the playoffs. He beat Tomas Vokoun with a semi-flubbed wrist shot in the first period then added a gritty score in the third period when he charged the net and knocked in a rebound.
It’s what Krejci tends to do this time of year. He put up a league-high 23 points in the 2011 playoffs while leading the Bruins to their first championship in nearly four decades. He’s on pace to crush that number through 13 games.
“It definitely gives the rest of us a lot of confidence and makes us want to do our part too,” Marchand said. “It flows all the way through the lineup when a guy’s going like that and creates energy for the rest of us and allows us to feed off of that.”