April 30, 2011

Krejci sticks it to Flyers with sensational outing

by Jesse Connolly

David Krejci celebrates a goal in the Bruins 7-3 win over the Flyers in Game 1. (Getty)

While winning Game 1 in any fashion was all David Krejci truly wanted, sticking it to the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center still felt awfully nice.

It was there that the Bruins center's season ended a year ago, as a devastating, open-ice hit from Mike Richards in Game 3 of the second round left Krejci with a broken wrist and proved to be a precursor to Boston's eventual historic collapse.

The Czech pivot exacted a little revenge on Saturday afternoon, picking up four points with two goals and a pair of assists as the Bruins won Game 1, romping the Flyers 7-3.

"I try not to think about what happened last year, but it's in the back of my head," Krejci said after the victory. "You don't forget these things. It's hard. I just tried to stay focused for the game and my teammates helped me out today."

Krejci didn't have to try to hard about the devastating fashion in which his year came to a crashing halt last May. The Flyers made sure to give him a few not-so-friendly reminders.

"The guys from the other team, they let me know in the first period about last year," said Krejci. "There was yapping back and forth so they kind of let me know."

 Krejci's outstanding performance shut them right up. After tallying in the opening minutes to give his team an early lead, the 25-year-old forward continued to torture Philadelphia all day, as he and linemates Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton had their way with the Flyers throughout the contest.

"I think we did all the little things pretty well," Krejci said. "We were really focused before the game. Right from the beginning, we were all over the puck and we played a full 60 minutes."

While he admittedly didn't perform up to snuff in the first round, picking up just a single point against the Canadiens in seven games, Krejci knows there's nothing to gain by reflecting on the past.

"As a team, if you go through the round then that's a good thing," he said. "For me, I know I didn't produce that much but I still thought my line played pretty well. We had so many chances but we couldn't bury them.

"Sometimes it happens. It was a tough series for us, but I think we bounced back. One game doesn't make the playoffs, so we've just got to keep it going."

The Bruins poured as many pucks on net as possible in this one, testing goalie Brian Boucher as often as possible until the Flyers netminder was finally chased when Boston made it 5-1 late in the second period.

"Obviously we talked about their goalies and that was our goal, to put pucks on net with traffic and make sure he doesn't see those shots," said Krejci. "I think that's what happened and we've just got to keep it going in the second game."

While no one would expect the center to be critical of Boucher's performance, Krejci believes the Bruins simply scored quality goals and took advantage of most of their opportunities on the day.

"I think we scored good goals," he said. "I don't think he played badly. We did the right things with traffic. If you want to score in the playoffs, we've just got to keep paying the price in front of the net and tonight it went our way."

Krejci and company will undoubtedly head into the second tilt in this series with a wealth of confidence, as their convincing win has them off to about as good a start as possible in this series.

"We talked about how it would be nice to get the first win and get started on the right foot," Krejci said. "I think we did a pretty good job tonight."