That's right everyone, time to start growing those playoff beards (this includes you, lady fans out there!). The Bruins clinched their fourth straight playoff berth with a 2-1 win in Philadelphia last night. The amazing thing about last night wasn't the actual win, but how the Bruins scored their two goals; on the power play. HEY NOW! Catch your breath man because I know that was shocking to you too! Not one, but two power play goals in a single game. Not in a month, not in 30 attempts, but in one game.
After the jump...we look at the playoff standings with 7 games left...
If the playoffs were to start today, the Bruins would be facing the Montreal Canadiens and the shit storm that happened last week would intensify ten fold. Let's take a look at the current standings. (If you can't read it, please click on the link)
The Bruins have seven games left (vs. Blackhaws, vs. Maple Leafs, vs. Thrashers, @ New York Rangers, vs. Long Island, vs. Ottawa, @ New Jersey) with five of those seven at home. The biggest issue with that? The Bruins play much better on the road then they do at home. As you can see by the graphic, the Bruins are 24-10-5 on the road and only 18-13-5 at home. I don't get that, at all. It's also tough to explain why that happens, when the rest of the East seemes to have a better home record than road record (with the exception of Philly, New York and Buffalo). That bodes well for the playoffs, since the Bruins will HAVE to win at least one game on the road if they want to continue their playoff success (and hopefully get past the second round).
Now it's time to look at the opponent. Montreal, New York and Buffalo are in 6th, 7th and 8th and separated by two points. Buffalo has a game in hand on both Montreal and New York. To make matters worse (or better, however you want to look at it) the Bruins are four points behind Washington for second place and has a game in hand on them. Needless to say, the 1-2-3-4 race and 6-7-8 race is on. Pittsburgh is tied with Washington with 98 points so those teams could flip-flop positions throughout the rest of the season. This doesn't affect the Bruins, at least in the first round.
I polled the Days of Y'Orr staff on who they want the Bruins to face in the first round and this is was the response:
Robb - I'm probably going to have to go with Buffalo, Two of the games they beat us went to OT (one two a SO) and seemed like closer games overall. One game we one against MTL was a shitshow (8-6) and I doubt the Bruins are going to replicate the 7-0 performance. I think Buffalo is overall the worse team.
Justin - On the fence between Montreal and Buffalo - doesn't want to face the Rangers.
Greg - Montreal. The Bruins have shown they can skate with the Habs, despite their 2-4 record on the season. Regular season records don't mean much when the playoffs begin. What scares me about the Rangers is that they've always played the Bruins well and Lundqvist is an animal against Boston. I don't think Buffalo has a shot at #6, to be honest.
Jon - Montreal. The Bruin's beating the Habs without having to literally beat them down really shook the Habs' confidence. If seeds 1-4 win, I still trust Timmy Thomas enough to hold down the fort while the rest of the team gets their shit together.
So who do you want the Bruins to face? Looks like its between Montreal, Buffalo and New York.