B's looking to rebound from 'slap in the face'

B's looking to rebound from 'slap in the face'
April 25, 2013, 3:45 pm
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BOSTON -- The results of Thursday night’s makeup game with the Tampa Bay Lightning probably won’t matter all that much when the playoffs begin next week.

But what will matter is the Bruins displaying some sliver of evidence that they were ready for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and starting to feel good about themselves when so much of this season has been disappointing. They are still hanging onto the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference based on the equally shoddy play of the Montreal Canadiens, but the Bruins are under no illusions they’re in a good place after losing five of their last six games.

Claude Julien hopes that it was merely a “bad game” after ripping his players to shreds following Tuesday night’s disappointing loss in Philadelphia, but even he’s not sure at this point with only three games remaining in the season.

“The challenge right now is our focus,” said Julien. “I mentioned the other night it wasn’t really there. We weren’t ready to play and we weren’t ready to do the things that are going to give us success."

“Did we take a step back? I think tonight’s an opportunity to prove that we haven’t and that it was just a bad game. We’ve just got to go out there and play hard.”

The glaringly blown defensive assignments and missed offensive opportunities were obvious in the wake-up call loss to the Flyers, but there was also a stunning indifference to the way Boston played. Aside from Shawn Thornton dropping the gloves and Gregory Campbell fearlessly jumping in front of shots in a hopeless game, it appeared as if few of the Bruins players really wanted to be there.

The clear indifference is so unlike the Black and Gold it was stunning to watch.

“I think we have had our wake-up calls in the last couple of games. Maybe the Philly game was a slap in the face,” said David Krejci. “We know we haven’t been playing the way we want to. At this time of year you don’t want think about negative stuff, though. We have three games left, so that’s what we should focus on.”

It’s a nice notion from Krejci and the rest of the Bruins that they’re trying to keep things on the positive tip, but that’s nearly impossible when you’ve lost five of six games and been verbally dressed down from your coach. That reeks much more if desperation and last resorts with the all-important playoffs lurking just around the corner for a Bruins that can’t afford to be one-and-done once again.