How important is Game 6 in the Stanley Cup Finals? Important enough that the Game 6 winner has won nine of the past 11 titles.
But what if your team is leading the series 3-2 and loses Game 6? Then what happens?
"What happens is that your team usually loses Game 7 as well, so you better not blow your chance to clinch in Game 6," said Jack Randall of OddsShark.com.
Indeed, in three of the past four Cup finals where a team failed to clinch in Game 6, they also failed in Game 7. And the last team to rally from a 3-2 series hole? Thein 2011 against the .
So on Monday night (8 p.m. ET, NBC) in Boston, the Bruins try to duplicate that 2011 situation -- win at home in Game 6, then win on the road in Game 7 (back at the Madhouse Wednesday).
Thisseries already made up for the shortened regular season, at least for purists, by matching two of the NHL's Original Six.
Theand Boston Bruins have since taken the excitement to the next level, playing five great games, including Saturday night's 3-1 Chicago victory that gets the 'Hawks to within one more victory of their second Cup championship in the last four seasons.
As of Monday morning, most sportsbooks with Stanley Cup odds had the Bruins as small -125 moneyline favorites. And the OVER/UNDER sat at 4.5 goals, which might be good value if history repeats itself because the past three Game 6s in the Finals have seen seven goals.
The big questions heading into Game 6 are how each team might cope possibly without one of their main cogs. Boston's Patrice Bergeron, who's scored nine goals in this Spring's playoffs, missed most of the last two periods of Saturday night's game with an undisclosed injury.
And Chicago's Jonathan Toews, who's got two goals and 10 assists this postseason, missed the third period after taking a hard hit to the head.
Both are listed as questionable, although Toews says today he will play. [Twitter updates]
If Boston wins Monday night this Stanley Cup series will go to a Game 7 Wednesday night in Chicago.