BOSTON -- It’s become clear there’s a mandate within the Bruins dressing room to keep everything on the positive tip.
It doesn’t matter if the Bruins lose as they did on Thursday night: a sleepy 2-1 effort to a New York Islanders team they might just meet in the first round of the playoffs. Or if they offer no response when Brad Marchand is concussed by an elbow to the head.
Claude Julien and the rest of the Bruins coaching staff are going the “Hakuta Matata” route, apparently in the hope that it will take some of the pressure off the players. And it appears to be working, as Bruins captain Zdeno Chara sounded off a positive tone on Thursday night after a game that didn’t offer a lot of moments for reflection.
“I didn’t feel like we were out of sync," he said. "We played hard. We fought for every puck. Some plays obviously we could’ve made better plays, but at the same time we know [the Isles are] playing really well, too. I thought we had a really good first period. We were jumping. We were battling for every puck.
“They pushed back in the second, and in the third it was a really even game. It just came down to maybe scoring on some chances we had. I thought we deserved at least another goal, but that’s the way it goes sometimes.”
The Bruins lost in regulation at home for the first time in 10 games and dropped out of first place after a brief stay ahead of Montreal in the Northeast Division. But they’re also still hanging around in the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference despite authoring some less-than-stellar performances.
“I think we played a strong game. We played the way we wanted to play,” said David Krejci. “I don’t know the score. We were down 1-0, I think, after the first, but it didn’t feel like it. I think we felt good about ourselves after the first period in this room. We talked about it.”
It sounded like the Bruins were ready to sound off a positive tone in the home dressing room no matter what happened on Thursday night, and it will take a lot more than one measly loss to the Isles to knock them off the pedestal.