Krejci Nets Hat Trick, B's Earn Series Lead
TORONTO, ON - David Krejci has scored 57 points in 63 playoff games with the Bruins.
So, following his hat trick that included the overtime-winner that led his Black & Gold to a 4-3 win in Toronto and 3-1 series lead over the Leafs, the center was asked about his "clutch" ability in the postseason.
Krejci gave a smile and a shrug. "It happens," said the soft-spoken Bruin, on his game-winner in extra time that gave him his second career hat trick - and his second postseason OT-winner.
And then, he casually deflected all of the praise to his teammates.
"If it wouldn't have been for Horty [Nathan Horton], he took that hit to make a play. And the other guys played a big part on the goal, Looch [Milan Lucic] was driving the net; I was actually looking the whole way to pass, then I heard Zee [Zdeno Chara] was behind me. I had that many options, but they took them away and I got left with the shot."
"Luckily, it went in."
"I'm just trying to do my best," he added, when pressed about his ability to find playoff success. "Go out there and play as hard as I can and help the team win the game. That's all."
Krejci's teammates, postgame in the visiting team locker room at the Air Canada Centre, were also asked about the centerman's postseason prowess.
Johnny Boychuk was matter-of-fact when questioned by the media about what brings out the best in Krejci during the second season.
"He's always like that..." said the defenseman.
Krejci's linemate, Milan Lucic, was also not surprised by No. 46's big night.
"I've seen it for six years now," said Lucic. "It's pretty amazing in my eyes that it's gone overlooked as long as it has. He's a big-time player."
"He's got a lot of confidence, a real good skill set, he's showing it in this series."
"We talked about it before overtime, almost every team talks about it before overtime, not to pass up on shots," said Lucic. "I was driving the net and I'm happy [Krejci] didn't pass it to me, he kept it himself and then put it over the goal line."
"We talked about it. It was crucial to get a win," added Krejci. "We knew they were a desperate team, but we also talked about it that we're a desperate team as well."
"It's a big difference going back home with a 3-1 lead or a tied series, 2-2. It was a big one tonight, but we know that the last step is the hardest."
It wasn't only Krejci's relentless attitude that led the B's to the Game 4 victory - it was a full team effort.
The Bruins rallied back from down 2-0 heading into the second, to score three unanswered goals in the middle period and make it 3-2. Patrice Bergeron cut the lead to 2-1, before Krejci's first two goals put the Bruins on top. Clarke MacArthur tied the game at three at 17:23 of the second period, before a scoreless third period sent the game to overtime.
"Just keeping it simple. It's just one mistake and the team could win," said Boychuk of the mindset heading into extra time. "But Tuukka did a good job on a couple of those saves."
"Obviously, Krejci put it in the net."