Bruins Shutout Canucks, Tie Up Series
A 4-0 victory at TD Gardens on Wednesday night tied the Stanley Cup finals at 2-2 and the Bruins have taken added determinination from the injury in Game 3 to Horton.
Vancouver Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome was suspended four games by the NHL for a hit that put Horton out of the remainder of the finals with a concussion and his team-mates have found an extra gear as they strive to win the Cup for him.
It’s not just the Bruins but the whole of Boston that is pulling for Horton and the whole of TD Gardens were chanting his name as the Bruins coasted to victory.
Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas claimed his first shut-out of the finals and has allowed just five goals on 146 shots in the series.
But Thomas was delighted to see Horton in the locker room after the game and admitted it has been a major boost to the team.
Thomas said: “Well, first of all, I was very, very happy to see Nathan up and around in the locker room.
“I wasn't exactly sure of his status. You know, I'd heard that he was okay, but then I heard it was a severe concussion.
“I didn't know if 'okay' meant he's going to live or...
“When I personally got to see him in the locker room, you know, I was incredibly happy and it gave me a big boost. He was there to pass the jacket on.
“We didn't pass the jacket on the last game with him gone. I think the team would have been happy leaving it with Horty for the rest of this series, but he wanted to give it away and keep the tradition going that we'd started.
“So actually he gave it to Peverley, the guy who replaced him on the line. He was obviously great for us tonight.
“He got the first goal and the last goal. That first goal and the fourth goal are very important goals. We wouldn't have won without the way he played.
“I think he did a great job stepping into Horty's spot on the line. I'm very happy for Pevs, too.”
Thomas also played down his run-in with Alexandre Burrows late it the third period as nothing more than a typical competitive battle.
Thomas added: “They'd been getting the butt end of my stick actually. They did it a couple of times on the power-play in the first period also.
“I don't know who it was, I was focused on the puck. That was like the third time that he'd hit my butt end on that power-play.
“On 6-4, we were up 4-0, the game was getting down toward the end, so I thought I'd give him a little love tap and let him know, I know what you're doing, but I'm not going to let you do it forever.
“So that's all that was. It was a typical battle.”
That wasn't the only incident late in the game as Marchand upended Daniel Sedin behind Thomas' goal, bringing together another scrum that resulted in him picking up a roughing minor alongside Keith Ballard.
Canucks coach Alain Vigneault insists confidence remains high in the Vancouver camp despite the two big losses in Boston and said: “It's real good.
“You know, if somebody would have told me at the beginning of the year that we could play for the Stanley Cup, best two-out-of-three series with home ice advantage in front of our fans, I would have taken those odds, I would have taken that anytime to play for the big prize.
“That's what we've got right now. We're going to put these last two games behind us. We play real well at home. We're going to go and feed off the energy from our fans and give it our best shot.”
And he is not worried about the lack of production from Henrik and Daniel Sedin, who have combined for just two points in the openbing four games.
Vigneault added: “They're fired up. They're playing for the Stanley Cup. They spent a lot of time in the other team's end tonight with no results to show at the end.
“But it's not from lack of effort, not from lack of playing the right way.
“They did a good job. You got to give that team credit. You know, they're playing a smart game. Right now they've been able to shut us down offensively here for the last two games.”