Paying the price if paying off for Bruins

WILMINGTON, Mass. — There was center Marc Savard taking a hit to make a breakout pass right after Mark Stuart did the same in the defensive-zone corner to start a play that ended with Shane Hnidy scoring a huge goal for the Boston Bruins Saturday night in the club’s Game 2 win over Montreal at TD Banknorth Garden.

There was Chuck Kobasew getting hammered along the wall in the Canadiens’ zone while keeping the puck alive for Savard to cash in for the game’s first goal. It seems that paying the price is contagious right now for the Bruins, and it has paid off with a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.

“Whether they’re tips, rebounds, just whacking away at it, you have to,” said Kobasew today after the Bruins held a team meeting and before they departed for Montreal. “The goalies in this league are so good that a lot of times you don’t beat them on that first shot and it takes that second shot to beat them.”

Kobasew is one of those Bruins that only has two speeds — asleep at night and all-out the rest of the time. But in the playoffs, everyone has to do the same.

“You pay the price a little bit more, but if you score a goal or you create that space for a guy so he can score a goal, it’s rewarding,” he said.

Stuart’s been known to throw his weight around in his own end. He says that making plays when opponents are bearing down is all about preparation.

“Guys are coming at you hard. You’re going to have to take hits to make plays, for sure. Usually knowing when they’re coming, it’s just get rid of the puck and prepare yourself to get hit,” said the blueliner.

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