Prior to last night's game against the Canes I was thinking that what the B's really needed was one of those 7-2 blowouts to rebuild their confidence. It turned out that 5-1 was good enough.
It was Shane Hnidy who made it happen. Ever since that puck went off Thornton's skate into the goal, the puck hadn't been bouncing the B's way. You could see their confidence sag, particularly against New Jersey. New Jersey won that 1-goal game on a fluke that went under Thomas. The Bruins couldn't buy a goal, even a fluke. It seemed the Hockey Gods were aligned against them.
After his goal last night Hnidy said he was just putting the puck near the net and it just happened to go in. After that, the Bruins skated harder and made better decisions more quickly. You could see the room to skate opening up as their confidence swelled. Throughout the last few games the most obvious difference was that there seemed to be less room. The breakout was stalled because a defender would be all over the forward when a pass arrived. The other teams were pressing hard in all three zones. But after Hnidy scored that began to change. As the B's had more room to skate you could see their confidence swell with each shift. And in turn they had even more room. With six minutes to go in the 3rd the Bruins were ahead 2-1. Six minutes later thay had added four goals.
Take a rest boys--you earned it.