I depressingly took the Canadiens in my first round predictions: http://sexybostonsports.blogspot.com/2011/04/stanley-cup-playoffs-round-1-preview.html, so I can't say that I'm all that surprised by last night's result.
The Bruins pretty much dictated play for most of the game, but there are two issues that I would like to address.
1) Shots on Goal/Crashing the Net
Aside from a few quality scoring chances in the first period and early in the second, the Bruins offense was horseshit. The casual observer will note that the Bs had 31 shots on goal and "dominated" Montreal. Truth be told - the Bruins did outplay Montreal. Once again, however, just like we've come to realize year in and year out, the Bruins don't know how to win when it counts. This was your typical Boston Bruins hockey game: outshoot the opponent, but never develop any quality scoring chances in the meantime resulting in a low-scoring loss.
The fact of the matter is of the 31 shots on Carey Price, about 25 of them were straight into his stomach. Price wasn't required to move laterally from post to post or make any spectacular saves. Every shot was into his gut and smothered up with no rebound opportunities. Anybody could have made the saves that Price made last night. This includes yours truly - me of the 6.72 goals against average in beer league hockey at Northstar Youth Forum. Kid's got a permanent sunburn on the back of his neck from the goal lamp after this past season.
I am not taking anything away from Carey Price. He's a spectacular goaltender and is more than capable of stealing the series from the Bruins. However, the Bruins did not test him ONCE last night. All the shots from the point were high, which goes against all basic fundamentals of hockey. Keep the shots low for rebounds and tips. Furthermore, the Bruins made no effort to screen Price. He had a clear lane of vision at EVERY shot thrown his way. Couple this with the fact that he didn't need to make any real athletic stops and it was a fairly easy shutout for the Canadien netminder.
2) Tomas Kaberle
The Bs traded a first round pick for this bum!?!? The first goal falls solely on his shoulders.
He carelessly reverses the puck blindly, which results in a turnover in the defensive zone. And to top things off, he loops around the faceoff circle even more lazily. This was a lazy, lazy play on account of He Who The Bruins Traded a First Round Pick For. Not only does he loop around the circle, but he lets the forechecker (Brian Gionta) inside between himself and the net. This is piss-poor defensive zone play. I already highlighted this in Staal's play from the night before, which also resulted in a game-winning goal. Once again, going back to the fundamentals of hockey, starts and stops. If He Who the Bruins Traded a First Round Pick For picks his head up, realizes the turnover in his own zone, stops and quickly changes direction, then Gionta gets tied up and it's still a 0-0 game.
You can't be so careless with the puck in your own zone. So far, we've seen two lackadaisical plays by D-men, which have resulted in losses for their team.
Moreover, He Who The Bruins Traded a First Round Pick For had zero shots on net. The Bruins targeted him because of his ability to move the puck and his precision passing. His prized puck possession skills resulted in a key defensive zone turnover, a +/- of -2 and zero shots on goal. SHOOT THE PUCK!!!!