1. Discipline is a must, Boston will try to get you off your game: The Bruins did a really good job shutting down both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Neither of the two superstars had a goal over the 4 game sweep. In game one of the series, the Bruins got under the skin of both players, throwing Crosby and Malkin off their games. The superstars each landed in the penatly box, Crosby got 2 minors and Malkin a fighting major, and it was mission accomplished for Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and the rest of the Bruins. Skate and compete hard during play and when you hear a whistle, skate away. You might have to take one for the team, but it’s worth it during this time of year.
2. Clean breakouts will prevent a bruising, Bruins forecheck: We hear a lot about quick transition in the NHL. Chicago is one of the best transition teams in all of hockey. Boston is known for their ferocious fore check. They are a team that will give you the puck deep so they can try and get it back. Tape to tape passes and clean exits are a must for breaking this full court press. That means getting back fast and getting to open lanes so that you can be an outlet. When 4 other guys on your team want the puck when you have it, it makes your job a lot easier for breaking the puck out cleanly.
3. Power Play will be a difference maker: A lot has been said about the relaxation in penalty calls during the Stanley Cup playoffs. I believe that’s going to change tonight, thinking the league and the referees want to send a message early. I would't be surprised if one of these teams gets 4 or 5 opportunities on the power play. You don’t have to score a goal with the man advantage, but just generate some chances and gain some momentum. Too often in these playoffs a power play has been a momentum killer for the Blackhawks. Rotation up top when the puck is high with shots getting through, and movement down low when the puck is below the hash marks with 2 or 3 bodies going hard to the net.