The Boston Bruins core group are experienced at the whole playoff thing, so they always throw out a few disclaimers at the beginning of every Stanley Cup playoff run.
Certainly, a hockey club needs to be good and needs to be lucky in order to get through four playoff rounds and end up hoisting the Stanley Cup. The B’s were neither one of those things against the New York Islanders in the final evaluation.
New York Islanders simply wore down the Bruins physically over the course of the series. Good playoff hockey. Bruins were not the better team in 2 of the last 3 games and really ended things with a whimper in Game 6.
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) June 10, 2021
Perhaps even more importantly, a hockey club needs relatively good health if they hope to navigate through four rounds of playoffs. The Boston Bruins definitely didn’t enjoy the kind of optimal health a hockey team would need for a legitimate Stanley Cup run, and that was evident in Boston’s 6-2 Game 6 elimination loss at the hands of the Islanders at Nassau Coliseum.
“At end of the day, you could see that our back end got thin,” said Bruce Cassidy, who said that Kevan Miller (upper body) might have able to play in Game 7 after missing the entirety of the second round series. “It was a challenge for them, specifically [in Game 6] and parts of Game 5. It was personnel-driven back there where lost key guys on the penalty kill and it became a factor in Game 5.
“Tonight, we didn’t manage the puck very well and it was by guys that play a lot for us. It caught up to us and that didn’t help. [The Islanders] were able to stay relatively healthy. That makes a difference. That’s playoff hockey. We’ve done it [prior to that] with other guys being out of the lineup throughout the playoffs and the regular season, but we weren’t able to get through it.”