Boston Bruins

May 4, 2021; Newark, New Jersey, USA; Boston Bruins center David Krejci (46) during warm ups before the game against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Four crosschecks from Islanders center Mathew Barzal was enough to get David Krejci hot and bothered.

To the point where Krejci sent a stick right between Barzal’s legs. The blow left Barzal in a heap, drew the ire of the Nassau Coliseum crowd, and had Krejci sent to the box while the officials reviewed the penalty as a potential major. The referees ultimately settled on a two-minute minor for Krejci, and the veteran Boston center had his own thoughts on how Barzal handled the ole’ vanilla nut taps, and shared them with the world following the team’s Game 4 defeat.

“Obviously wasn’t happy about it,” Krejci said of the run-in with Barzal. “He went down pretty easily, but, it is what it is.”


Barzal, of course, had a different view (and feeling) of the incident.

“I was a little surprised,” Barzal, who scored the game-winning goal in the 4-1 final, said. “I haven’t seen the clip yet. I felt it was a little vicious. But it’s the ref’s call there. It’s a judgment call from them. Yeah, I thought it was a tad vicious.”

For the Bruins, the ruling was yet another one that frustrated Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy, who saw his team penalized with two minutes left in a tied game in Game 3 on one crosscheck from Sean Kuraly, but saw four crosschecks unleashed on Krejci to no whistle while Krejci was called for his retaliatory cup check to Barzal’s pants.

Speaking after the game, Cassidy vented about the officials, noting that the Bruins haven’t gotten many calls this postseason.

“At times,” Krejci said when asked if he sees the same imbalance in the calls in this series. “But it is what it is.

“You just control what you can control. Don’t worry about if the ref doesn’t make a call. He can go back and make a call, so you just got to find a way to play through it and stay away from the ref. They’re doing their best just like us. Sometimes we don’t have it, sometimes they don’t have it. So they’re just human beings just like us. So we just got to focus on our game.”

And for Krejci, who scored Boston’s lone goal in the defeat, it’s about turning page as the series shifts back to Boston.

“Right now, just put [Game 4] behind us and make some adjustment and be better next game,” said Krejci.

The Bruins and Islanders are tied 2-2 in their best-of-seven Stanley Cup Playoff series. What does Boston need to do to get back control of the series in Game 5?

If you ask Matt Dolloff and Ty Anderson of the SideLines podcast at 98.5 The Sports Hub, it’s a shakeup on the bottom-six forward lines. And even then, they still desperately need Brandon Carlo back on defense. But will we see either of those things on Monday night?

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.

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