There is no doubt that the playoff confidence is at an all-time high for the Boston Bruins during these particular Stanley Cup playoffs.
The Bruins are coming off a one-sided 4-1 win in Game 4 over the Washington Capitals on Friday night that snapped a string of three straight overtime playoff games between the two sides and pushed the Bruins to a 3-to-1 lead in the best-of-seven playoff series. Certainly, it’s no fait accompli until all four wins against Washington have been secured by the Black and Gold, and that’s the message from B’s leadership facing their first chance to eliminate the Capitals in Game 5 at Capital One Arena on Sunday night.
“The guys are elevating. The whole team is elevating. We’re trying to build something here and grow every game. We’re doing our due diligence off the ice as far as pre-scouts and getting ready to play and our mindset is to do whatever it takes to win,” said Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy. “Winning is all that matters, so I’m just trying to pull the rope just like everything else. I think that’s what the whole team is doing. Now we shift to the next game and it’s going to be the hardest one to get [in the series].”
Clearly the messaging across the entire Boston Bruins team is the same as Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy said very much the same after Saturday’s optional B’s practice prior to heading to Washington DC. Things sound like they are much more of a business trip feel rather than any excessive emotion or concern put into a chance to end the Capitals season and get an early jump on readying and resting for the next round of the playoffs.
“Nothing changes for us. We’ve said all along we’re just trying to get better in the series. We want to get four [wins] first obviously and that’s what in front of us. We’ve got three and it takes four wins to win [a series] so we’re not getting ahead of ourselves,” said Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy. “As we’ve done every game, we reinforce everything we’re doing well and correct things we’re not doing right and make adjustments as need be.
“That won’t change [preparing for Game 5]. I think the leadership group will take care of any message that needs to be sent about where we are in the series. That’s how we’ve approached it.”
There’s no reason for the Bruins to change anything as they are hitting their stride in just about every area. Both special teams units dominated the Capitals in Game 4, Tuukka Rask has a .930 save percentage in the four playoff games against Washington and B’s game-breaker David Pastrnak snapped out of his scoring funk and potted his first goal of these playoffs in Friday night’s Game 4 win over Washington.
It feels on its face like the Capitals are in big trouble given the way they looked in a limp Game 4 loss to the Bruins, but the B’s aren’t changing anything about an approach that’s got them on the brink of playoff advancement.