Bieksa faces tall task in Chara

CHRIS STEVENSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:43 PM ET

VANCOUVER - Defenceman Kevin Bieksa is used to having his hands full in front of the Vancouver Canucks net.

Battling with 6-foot-9 Boston Bruins defenceman Zdeno Chara in front when the B's are on the power play takes it to new heights.

"A lot of the guys are taking runs at him, trying to check out the big guy, see what he's made out of," Bieksa said. "It's fun to play against him. We're going to play hard against everybody. When you're playing against the biggest and the strongest guy in the league, you want to test yourself. We're going to be physical every chance we get."

"Obviously, it's a little bit different from being on the point. But I think the main purpose of the whole thing is the same: You have to be willing to do whatever it takes," Chara said. "All five guys have to do their jobs on the power play to be successful."

With the Bruins power play just 5-for-67 in the playoffs (0-for-6 in Game 1), Boston coach Claude Julien put Chara in front of the opposition net during the Eastern Conference final to screen the opposition goaltender.

Bieksa said there are certain qualities a player needs to be effective in front of the net like Detroit Red Wings forward Tomas Holmstrom, recognized as one of the best around the blue paint.

"The guys who want to be there in front. Some guys are standing there just to be there because they're told to and there's other guys who want to be there," Bieksa said. "A guy like Holmstrom wants to be there. You're not going to move him and he's got a great stick for tipping shots. When a guy has a really good stick in front, you really have to respect him.

"It's definitely an art."

chris.stevenson@sunmedia.ca

twitter.com/CJ_Stevenson


Photos