Bruins, Rangers both hoping fallen stars rise in semi-finals

Both Brad Marchand, left, and Tyler Seguin, right, never found a groove in the quarterfinals against the Leafs. (Getty Images)
Both Brad Marchand, left, and Tyler Seguin, right, never found a groove in the quarterfinals against the Leafs. (Getty Images)

With each NHL playoff series that passes, it’s wise to reassess teams, coaches and players, realizing that the script can dramatically change in the next round. The Bruins and Rangers both survived taxing seven game series’ against the Maple Leafs and Capitals, respectively, and it was in spite of some of their top players making little happen in the first round. Much of the focus in the series will be regarding which teams’ big guns finally step up and which team has stars that continue to wilt in the postseason.

Whichever team gets more of the same, odds are they’ll be sent packing for the summer.

In Boston, Brad Marchand was the B’s leading scorer in the regular season with 18 goals and 18 assists while Tyler Seguin was tied for third on the team with 16 goals and 16 assists. Along with Patrice Bergeron, that trio was the Bruins’ most consistent line all season. Against Toronto, Bergeron (three goals, one assist) redeemed himself with an incredible Game 7 performance (two goals, one assist), but Marchand was held to three assists and Seguin had just one assist in the entire series. If you’re being positive, things couldn’t get much worse for Marchand and Seguin. The Bruins have to hope that maybe that winning play (with all three guys finally battling in front of the net) will carryover to the Rangers series.

Derek Stepan (18 goals, 26 assists) and Rick Nash (21 goals, 21 assists) were New York’s top two scorers in the regular season, but Stepan was held to two goals against Washington and Nash – their big offseason acquisition – managed only two assists. The Rangers struggled to score against the Caps, with just 16 goals in seven games, and that includes five in Game 7 vs. the Capitals. Much of that is due to Stepan and Nash dragging New York’s first line down with them. Ryan Callahan is the Rangers’ best all-around player (an American Bergeron) but also had a hard time with Braden Holtby and Washington, finishing the series with just one goal and two assists.

There are many individual matchups and games within the game that develop in every NHL playoff series but it’s definitely worth keeping an eye on these underachieving players who all have the ability to break out in this round.

Follow Metro Boston Bruins beat writer Richard Slate on Twitter @RichSlate


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.