Bruins just can't keep playing from behind against Canadiens

Canadiens' Dale Weise beats Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask in Game 3 action on Tuesday, May 6, 2014....

Canadiens' Dale Weise beats Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask in Game 3 action on Tuesday, May 6, 2014. (Martin Chevalier/QMI Agency)

Bruce Garrioch, Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 11:19 PM ET

MONTREAL - The Boston Bruins couldn’t push the comeback button Tuesday night.

After living dangerously in the first two games of this Round 2 series against the Montreal Canadiens, the Bruins weren’t able to erase a three-goal deficit in a 4-2 loss at a raucous Bell Centre.

While they tried to pull off another dramatic finish, the comeback fell short when Lars Eller scored into an empty net to give the Habs a 2-1 lead in what could be a pivotal game.

In the first two games of the series, they’ve come back from being down two goals in the third and have tied it up.

The loss left the Bruins well aware they have to clean up their act ... and quick.

“There is no way around it: The first period we got outplayed but after that I thought we fought out way back into it and started getting better,” said winger Jarome Iginla.

“They were at home. They played a really good first period and we weren’t as good as we should have been. We’re better than that and we know we need to be better than that.

“We don’t want to get behind. We believe if we do get behind we can come back. Unfortunately, we had an off period in the first and it cost us a lot.”

If the Bruins don’t correct it soon, it will cost them the series as well.

AROUND THE BOARDS

Montreal coach Michel Therrien shook up his lines, moving Brendan Gallagher and Thomas Vanek. He felt he needed a small shakeup and it worked well as Vanek set up Tomas Plekanec for the first goal. “Five-on-five we weren’t producing enough,” said Therrien. “I talked to the players about the changes and I thought it might bring a bit more energy to every line. I liked the results of this. Vanek made a hell of a play on the first goal. I was pleased with the change.” .... It’s not often Boston coach Claude Julien loses a Game 3 in a series. The Bruins have a 14-2 record in the last four seasons under Julien and had won 12 straight since 2009 before suffering the loss to the Habs ... The Bruins vow they’ll get off to a better start in Game 4. “We have to come out with a lot more desperation. We have to be desperate from the start,” said defenceman Johnny Boychuk.

OFF THE GLASS

The Bruins allowed P.K. Subban to skate out of the penalty box after a power play to score on a breakaway in the second. Plekanec’s goal was also the result of a bad defensive error. That’s not characteristic of this team. “We had a few breakdowns that can’t happen at this time of year and we made a mistake,” said Patrice Bergeron. “We’ve got to make sure we do a better of job of playing and having a good start. They are going to make you pay if you aren’t aware. We’ve got to do a better job.” ... The Bruins felt Subban may have knocked the net off purposely to get a stoppage with Boston pushing hard. “He’s playing the clock. Maybe he thought something was happening. Maybe he felt that we were coming hard,” said Bergeron. “You’ve got to leave it to the (officials) to make the call.”

THIS N’ THAT

Boston goalie Tuukka Rask felt maybe he should have banged his stick to let his teammates know the power play was over when Subban was set up for the breakaway in the first. “That’s part of my job and I decided not to,” said Rask, who made 23 stops ... Subban had the most ice time of any skater with 27:50 ... There was plenty of pre-game talk the Bruins had Carey Price figured out and had found his weakness but it certainly didn’t look that way. He made 26 stops for the victory ... This was the 62nd playoff game the Bruins have played over the last four seasons. That’s nine more than the 53 the L.A. Kings have played in that span ... Therrien was happy the Habs were able to close the Bruins out. “Playing in front of our fans was a big boost,” said Therrien. “I liked the way we played the third period. We only allowed seven shots. We had to make sure we finished the job.”

THE LAST WORDS

The Habs brought back Ginette Reno to sign O Canada. This place doesn’t need to do anything to get the fans riled up but it works pretty well just the same ... Great tip by Bergeron to get his club on the board at 17:48 of second ... There were nervous moments when Boston captain Zdeno Chara was slashed on the first shift and appeared to favour his wrist before heading to the room. He skated back out after the first timeout and that huge sigh of relief you heard came from Beantown. Chara still played 24:33 in the end ... Iginla rung one of the post in the second and Vanek hit one with five minutes to go in the third ... Great series — Game 4 back here tomorrow night.

bruce.garrioch@sunmedia.ca

Twitter: @SunGarrioch


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