The last time the Blackhawks hit the ice at TD Garden in Boston, they scored a pair of third-period goals 17 seconds apart in Game 6 and, well … you know the rest.
On Thursday, the Bruins got a bit of revenge on their home ice, thanks to a pair of third-period goals just 13 seconds apart that sealed the deal in a 3-0 victory for the red-hot Bruins, who picked up their 13th victory in 14 games, while the Hawks were shut out for the second time in less than a week.
Despite a decent push early, the Hawks never really threatened Boston goalie Tuukka Rask, who turned away all 28 shots he faced to pick up his seventh shutout of the season.
"It was a perfect start," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville told reporters, "but then we slowed down to a crawl. We were easy to play against and didn't really press enough. We had some chances later in the third period, but I thought we were … not very good tonight."
Meanwhile, the Bruins (50-17-6) just keep rolling. They are 16-1-3 in their last 20 games and need just 1 more point to clinch the Atlantic Division.
Patrice Bergeron's 24th goal of the season on a tip-in broke a scoreless tie at 11:50 of the second period, and it remained a 1-goal game until Carl Soderberg scored at 5:28 of the third. Bergeron added his second of the night just 13 seconds later.
Allowing an excellent defensive team a 3-goal cushion against a Hawks offense that has struggled since losing Patrick Kane to a knee injury simply proved to be no contest.
"You miss Kaner," Quenneville said. "You're trying some things and we're seeing what it can look like. We were up against a good defensive team; Boston's as stingy a team as there is."
Against everyone, including 19-year-old Teuvo Teravainen, whose debut against Dallas two nights earlier received stellar reviews from Quenneville. But against Boston, despite sharing the team-high with 3 take-aways in 13:48 of ice time, he garnered only a "he was OK" from the coach.
The Hawks came into Thursday's game hoping to officially clinch a playoff spot, but Phoenix topped New Jersey to delay the inevitable.
Perhaps only for a day, though, if recent history is any measure.
That's because the Hawks are 7-4-5 in the first game of a back-to-back series but enter Friday's matchup at Ottawa with an 11-1-3 mark in the second game of a back-to-back series.
"Another game," Quenneville said. "We'll get right back at it. One game at a time. We're not looking too far ahead.
"Get 1 more win -- that's the next game -- and go from there."