RALEIGH — It was easy to see that both head coaches in the Eastern Conference semifinal series between the Boston Bruins and Carolina Hurricanes are basically on the same page and have the same message.
I already wrote about Bruins bench boss Claude Julien’s optimism and his positive feelings toward the rest of this series despite his team being down, 2-1. Well, Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice, even with his team perched atop this series, is as cautious about his team’s success as Julien is about his team’s distress.
“They were very good all year. And the two numbers — their offense and their defense, their ability to score goals and defend well, means that there’s not a hole there,” he said of the Bruins. “We’re not exploiting any weakness in the Bruins’ game. They really don’t have any. They have a great goaltender, their back end is big and strong and they have some great transition forwards up front. So, I don’t sense in this series that we would ever look beyond a game and say, ‘hey, now we’ve got them where we want them.’ They’re just a tiger-by-the-tail idea.”
So one coach isn’t panicking and one isn’t gloating. That’s either a sign this is going to be a long series or a sign that one guy is out of touch with reality. We’ll see what the answer is this weekend.