The B's now face two virtual must-win games if they are to get themselves back into contention in this series.
To preview the pivotal Game 3 on Monday night, Vancouver Sun hockey writer Ian Walker shared his thoughts on Alex Burrows' performance in Game 2, Manny Malhotra's return to the ice after a career-threatening eye injury and other key storylines of the Stanley Cup Final.
NESN.com: Alexandre Burrows stole the show in Game 2 on plenty of fronts. What does he bring to the Sedin line that is already loaded with star power?
Ian Walker: While Burrows' skill set is often underrated outside of Vancouver, what he brings most to the line is tenacity. He's the perfect complement to the Sedins because of his ability to get on the forecheck and his willingness to go to the net. By doing this, he creates time and space for the twins.
He also has soft enough hands to benefit from their on-ice vision, and he knows to keep his stick on the ice since he never knows when the puck may land on it.
NESN.com: What kind of impact, both on and off the ice, did the return of Manny Malhotra have on the Canucks in Game 2?
Walker: It was indeed a special moment to see Malhotra come back from what could have been a career-ending injury. So in that regard, it offered a tremendous boost to the home team.
Malhotra played just 7:26, including 1:31 on the penalty kill, so he was used sparingly compared to his ice time before the injury. That said, he was an impressive 6-for-7 (86 percent) in the faceoff circle and created a great chance for Jeff Tambellini, who was stymied by the stick of Zdeno Chara on the doorstep in the second period.
NESN.com: The Canucks were able to withstand some blows from the Bruins before regaining momentum in the third period and into the few seconds of overtime? What did the Canucks do differently in the second half of the game to get back into the contest and win?
Walker: Vancouver seems to play better when they trail for some reason. They just start to skate more and use their forecheck to create havoc for the opposing defense when down on the scoresheet. That was exactly the case in Game 2, much like one game earlier when they came out of the second period firing on all cylinders.
NESN.com: What can the Bruins do to start getting more pucks past Roberto Luongo?
Walker: Traffic in front is where everything starts. Boston's big men haven't been making life difficult for the Canucks goalie and, as a result, he's seeing everything that comes his way.
That and shots from different angles, not just the perimeter. Luongo hasn't really been tested by Bruins snipers this series, which is surprising considering his history of allowing questionable goals.
NESN.com: Vancouver has played much better since almost losing a 3-0 series lead to Chicago in the first round. What did the Canucks learn from that experience, and how do they apply those lessons as they attempt to finish off the Bruins?
Walker: Everything the Canucks have been through this postseason has prepared them for success in the Stanley Cup Final. If anything, the seven-game series against the Blackhawks gave them a first-hand glimpse of how quickly the tide can turn if you let your opponent off the mat.
It definitely put a scare in the Canucks, who have dispatched their opponents more convincingly since, beating the Nashville Predators in six games and the San Jose Sharks in five. Game 3 in Boston will offer great insight into whether this trend will continue and how much they learned about having a killer instinct.
Thanks again to Ian Walker for answering our questions. You can read more from Ian by clicking here. Please check back before every game of the Bruins-Canucks series for more Across Enemy Lines. You also can read NESN.com Bruins reporter Douglas Flynn's contributions to this feature on VancouverSun.com.
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