For fans who have kept a sharp eye on the 2010-11 regular season prior to the last two months, however, it’s easy to remember that it’s not always a cakewalk when facing Les Habitants.
Sure, Boston’s hockey community should feel good about the rivalry at this point as the B’s took down the Canadiens in each of their last two TD Garden matchups. Those wins were two of the most thrilling events the Garden has seen since the building nearly vibrated Jack Edwards out of the NESN booth (or since Pete Rose “invoked the wrath of Kane” at WrestleMania XIV in 1998 — your call). Back in February, the B’s won after the two teams combined for 14 goals and over 180 penalty minutes. On Thursday, Boston “skunked” the Habs 7-0 and gave Tim Thomas his eighth shutout of the season.
But looking at the big picture, not only do the Canadiens own the season series 4-2, they also swept the B’s at the Bell Centre in all three matchups. For those who want to take a look at an even bigger picture, go ahead and research the postseason history of the rivalry and you may cringe when you see that the Habs have eliminated the B’s 24 times in 32 career playoff series matchups.
Would you feel comfortable about the team heading north for a few playoff games this year? Taking it a step further, would you want the Bruins to have to beat the Habs en route to a Stanley Cup run, a la Red Sox-Yankees in 2004?