BOSTON — When the Bruins were behind enemy lines in Chicago during Games 1 and 2 of the Stanley Cup Final, Gregory Campbell, one of the team’s unsung heroes, wasn’t around for the ride.
He wasn’t just missed on the ice, but off it, as well.
“With him not being able to be around us on the road, we definitely are going to enjoy his presence and just his comments on certain parts of the game and I think we’re all happy to see him again,” Daniel Paille said on Monday prior to Game 3.
Paille, a fellow Merlot Liner and penalty killer, ended up being the hero of Game 2, as he sniped the game-winner in overtime to tie up the series. The gritty forward beat Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford at 13:48 in overtime to send the Black and Gold back to Boston with a 2-1 win.
The goal was Paille’s third of the postseason and his first since Game 3 against the Rangers in the second round. Bouncing from his usual spot on the fourth line to the third line and being used more on the PK, Paille (like his buddy Campbell) stepped up his play this postseason — and he feels that Soupy’s sacrifice in the Eastern Conference finals has inspired both his play and the team’s.
“I think same thing, a couple of years ago happened to [Nathan Horton] and every time that someone goes down you always want to play for that player. Right now, Soupy, we know he’s done everything he did to help us get to where we’re at and we always want to make sure that it wasn’t for nothing. So, you want to leave it out there and make sure you give it everything.”
During the B’s Cup run in 2011, Horton was injured by Aaron Rome in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final, but motivated the team off the ice, while his mates went out and took down the Canucks en route to their first Cup win in almost 40 years.
“It’s something that no player wants to be a part of when you’re so close and you get injured but we all understand that there’s a territory that comes with it sometimes and he knows if he could skate he would be there and if there was that possibility,” Paille said of losing a teammate for the postseason. “I’m sure we would all love to have him back in that dressing room, but for now we have to play and adjust without him.”