The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will renew their storied rivalry Thursday night in Boston when they meet for a NHL record 34th time in the Stanley Cup playoffs in Game 1 of the their Eastern Conference second round series. . Each playoff series serves as another chapter, but the Canadiens have ruled much of this rivalry - winning 18 consecutive series from 1946-1987. But since then, the Bruins have won seven of 11 series including the last two out of three. That one loss for Boston is where the rivalry for a good portion of the core of both teams began and now its Montreal who is aiming to turn the tide back after coming so close in their seven-game series loss to the Bruins in 2011. "This building is vibrating!" Those were the words of long-time NESN Bruins play-by-play announcer Jack Edwards when then Boston Bruin Phil Kessel scored a third period game-tying goal during a classic see-saw affair in Game 6 of the 2008 Eastern Conference quarterfinal series between the eighth-seeded Bruins and top-seeded Canadiens. The Bruins would have to tie that game again and then win it 5-4 on a Marco Sturm goal with 2:37 left in regulation forcing a Game 7 after trailing the series 3-1. Montreal though avoided the epic collapse, winning Game 7 5-0. Ironically, that was Carey Prices first and last playoff series win - until the Canadiens recent sweep of the Lighting in the first round of this current playoff season. But in the eyes of the Bruins and their fans, that 2008 series reignited not only the rivalry, but the organization that has since won two straight series - including a 2009 sweep and their first Stanley Cup in 38 years after that nail-biting win over Montreal in 2011. That spring, the sixth seeded Canadiens came in as underdogs again to the third-seeded Bruins. But Montreal took the first two games in Boston to take what seemed like a commanding 2-0 series lead back to the Bell Centre for Games 3 and 4. But the Bruins took the next two games, including a 5-4 overtime win in Game 4 after trailing 3-1 early in the second and 4-3 in the third period. "We were up 3-1. We were up 3-1 going into the third," said Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban this week. "With a veteran team and the experience we had, we shouldve won the game but we didnt win it. Whos to say what wouldve happened moving forward? I just think we had an opportunity to beat the team that won the Stanley Cup that year." Since it was determined last Saturday that these two rivals would meet for the third time in the last five seasons, the Bruins have had no issues expressing their hatred for the Canadiens. "Yeah I do," Bruins forward Milan Lucic said Wednesday when asked if he hated the Habs. "If you asked them the same question Im sure theyd give you the same answer. "Its just natural for me, being here for seven years now, just being a part of this organization, you just naturally learn to hate the Montreal Canadiens and the battles weve had with them over the last couple of years have definitely made you hate them." The Canadiens however have not given the same answer leading into this series. "No comment," Montreal coach Michel Therrien said flatly after he was twice asked if he hates the Canadiens Wednesday.Lucic has built a personal rivalry with Montreal defenceman Alexei Emelin - similar to the one he had with former Canadiens defenceman Mike Komisarek back in 2009. Last month, Emelin nailed Lucic with a mid-ice hip check that resulted in Bruins captain Zdeno Chara hauling Emelin to the ice. Later in the game, Lucic speared Emelin in the groin. When asked about the personal showdown on Wednesday, Lucic explained thats "just part of the game" - when a right winger and a left sided defenceman square off with each other, and they will develop run-ins like that. But Emelin wasnt available to comment on the matter after Canadiens practice Wednesday and for much of the week, aside from Subban, many of the Montreal players downplayed the animosity. Where former Bruin and current TSN regional Canadiens color man Dave Reid is concerned, thats not necessarily Emelin or the Canadiens just taking the high road or following a gag order. "I think right now most of these guys dont understand what the rivalry is about but it will pick up as the series moves along and the fans will be in it," Reid said Wednesday night. "The fortunate thing about the Montreal and Boston rivalry is that they do seem to play each other so often and whoever won the last series, theyve got the swagger to start the series and the guys that were in that previous series on the losing series say ‘Hey we got something to prove. Thats what makes this rivalry so special - these two teams seem to play each other in the playoffs almost annually. I know the fans look forward to it on both sides and as time goes on so do the players. When youre a player on each side youre almost disappointed when you dont get the chance to go through Boston or Montreal to move on in the playoffs. So this will be another great series and I expect it to be a long series." Whether its this new generation of the rivalry or the older, they likely agree with Reid on those points. And this seasons Canadiens are most definitely looking to regain that swagger. "For guys that are in this room that were there [in 2011] and were a part of it, maybe this is another opportunity to salvage something," Subban later said. "You have to give them credit though. They played well too and its a seven-game series. It takes a lot of heart, a lot of blocked shots and a lot of grit to win that and they won it. They deserved to win it. But I thought that we fell a little bit short and we deserved to win as well but it didnt happen." For so many years, "it didnt happen" were the words of Bruins players following a Bruins-Habs series. Can this underdog Canadiens team make the Stanley Cup favorite Bruins utter those same words just as Ken Dryden and the 1971 Canadiens did to Bobby Orr and the heavily favored Bruins that season? This new generation of the Bruins-Habs rivalry is ready to write the next chapter and whether its at TD Garden or the Bell Centre, yes Mr. Edwards - the building will be vibrating. James Murphy is a freelance reporter who also writes for NHL.com, the Boston Herald and XNsports.com. He covered the Boston Bruins/NHL for last 11 seasons writing for ESPNBoston.com, ESPN.com, NHL.com, NESN.com, the Boston Metro, Insidehockey.com and Le Hockey Magazine. Murphy also currently hosts the radio show "Murphys Hockey Law" heard Saturdays 9-11 AM ET on Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio and 4-6 PM ET on Websportsmedia.com. In addition to that, he is a regular guest TSN 690 in Montreal and Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio as well as a hockey analyst on CTV Montreal. . -- Detroit Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera has a broken bone below his right eye after being struck by a bad-hop grounder, sidelining the star slugger for at least a week with opening day on deck. . The 31-year-old, a two-time CFL lineman of the year, was among the most coveted free agents on the market. The Windsor, Ont., native will be especially important to a team that has lost veteran quarterback Anthony Calvillo to retirement and is expected to go with the less experienced Troy Smith and Tanner Marsh this season.KAUPULEHU-KONA, Hawaii -- Bernhard Langer birdied five of the last six holes Sunday to pull away from Fred Couples and Jeff Sluman and win the Mitsubishi Electric Championship by three strokes. The 56-year-old German shot his second straight 64 in the final round of the winners-only event that opened the 35th season of the Champions Tour. He finished with a 54-hole total of 22-under 194 at Hualalai. "Its a new year and my goal was to get over the hurdle and win as soon as possible," said Langer, who won here five years ago. "Im very pleased and extremely blessed to play golf like this. To be 22 under doesnt happen very often." Langer, who is 41 under in his last seven rounds at Hualalai, earned his 19th senior victory, but first since April despite a string of top-10 finishes the last half of 2013. He and Couples shared the lead at 14 under going into the final day under ideal conditions. Sluman was two back, but surged ahead at the turn, his fifth birdie putt taking him to 17 under. All but one came from inside 6 feet. "My iron shots were pretty bueno on those," said Sluman, who was making in his 80th consecutive senior start. He has been among the tours top-20 money winners the last five years. Langer and Couples caught him at 18 under with birdies on No.. . 13. Langer just kept rolling, two-putting for birdie on the next hole to grab the lead alone, then draining three more birdie putts from inside 12 feet. Sluman closed with a 65. Couples, looking for his 10th Champions win and second in a row, had a 67. After playing Hualalais par-5s in 6 under on the opening day, he was just 4 under combined the final two days. Two-time senior Player of the Year Jay Haas made a late charge after parring all but two of the first 12 holes. He birdied the 13th, then chipped in for eagle and birdie to get within two on the 16th hole. He could make up no more ground on the streaking Langer. Haas, one of eight 60-year-olds in the field of 41, birdied the final hole to shot a 65 and finish fourth at 199. First-round leader Rocco Mediate also got within two with his seventh birdie of the day, at the 15th, but parred the final four. He shared fifth with David Frost -- who lost a playoff with John Cook here last year -- at 16 under. Langer, who earned $307,000 for the win, came up a shot short of making playoffs at both Hawaii senior events last year. The seniors play here again Sept. 18-21 in the Pacific Links Hawaii Championship at Kapolei. The next tour event in Hawaii is the LPGA Lotte Championship, April 16-19 at Ko Olina. ' ' '
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05 déc. 2019
they meet for a NHL record
they meet for a NHL record