Tonight the Bruins will host Tufts Medical Center and the AHA for Heart Health Night, featuring reminders for fans to take care of their cardiovascular system, including an in-house blood pressure screening booth.
This will be the Bruins’ first game after the All-Star break, and they will face
their arch rivals fiendish villains that other existing team, the Winnipeg Jets
The Bruins went into the break on a bit of a slide, going 2-3-1 in their last six games after getting healthy and starting the new year with 4 regulation wins in a row.
This left them barely clinging on to 3rd place in the Atlantic Division, and allowed Montreal to leapfrog them by playing two extra games prior to the break, leaving the Bruins in the 1st Wild Card slot in the east.
The Bruins have been troubled lately by a once-hot power play that has cooled off somewhat, but still continues to give short-handed scoring opportunities to their opponents, and some uneven defensive play.
But these are all things that are fixable. Temporary.
More troubling has been their woes in net. Backup netminder, Jaroslav Halak started the season with a stunning .930 save percentage through 20 games. However, for the last 5 games, Jaro has let in 17 of 122 shots for a miserable .860 save percentage & 3.67 GAA. Fortunately, primary goalie Tuukka Rask has found his game and had a point streak going at 6-0-1 over his last 7 games, tying Tiny Thompson for the most wins all time as a Bruin with 252. Then on the 19th, the Rangers came to town, and Tuukka was felled by a net-front collision with Filip Chytil. Tuukka’s head bounced off the pipes of the net, his helmet flew off, and he lay prone on the ice, looking uncomfortable when finally moved by the trainers. We have since learned that he received a concussion.
Filip Chytil collides with Tuukka Rask in the crease.— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) January 20, 2019
Rask leaves the game. pic.twitter.com/DusVYsokqm
For a while, there had been only limited updates. Tuukka is listed as ‘day-to-day’ but was not skating on Monday and will not play tonight. He did skate on his own today, and coach Bruce Cassidy is hopeful that Tuukka will be ready to play for Thursday. Will a 12 day break have truly been sufficient? If and when he comes back, will he be playing at the level he is capable of? It’s a rather troubling situation. Get well soon, Finnish brother.
Meanwhile, David Pastrnak had some fun at the All Star game. While he did not get any pucks past Henrik Lundqvist or Braden Holtby, he did manage to finish the most accurate shot challenge in 11.3 seconds, winning the event. He also managed two assists in the Atlantic vs Metropolitan All-Star game.
So what do the lines look like?
Joakim Nordstrom has returned to practice after an extended break due to a cracked fibula. Steve Kampfer, Matt Grzelcyk and Ryan Donato were healthy scratches last game. Donato and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson were assigned to the Providence Bruins on Monday, and recent visitor Peter Cehlárik was brought back up. Tuukka is out indefinitely, so the B’s called up another ‘tender in Zane McIntyre to back up Jaroslav Halak. Also called up for the first time is Bruins prospect Trent Frederic. You may recognize the young forward from this picture
A 9-year old Trent Frederic having picture taken with David Backes. Good chance the two are on the same line tomorrow when Frederic makes his #NHL debut with the #NHLBruins. #stlblues pic.twitter.com/PBduADuo4Q— Andy Strickland (@andystrickland) January 29, 2019
Unlike this photo, Backes is expected to be on Frederic’s right tonight. More on the Frederic/Backes/Tkachuk connection here
|Bruins Forward Lines|
|Bruins Defensive pairs|
|#41 Jaroslav Halak||(#31 Zane McIntyre)|
This evening’s opponent are the Winnipeg Jets. Winnipeg leads the Central division with a record of 31-14-2 for 64 points. They have a few injuries right now, including “Big Buff”, Nikolaj Ehlers and Ben Chiarot. I suppose that means more games for Dimitry Kulikov and (Bruins alumnus) Joe Morrow(h/t Daily Faceoff):
#81 Kyle Connor — #55 Mark Scheifele — #26 Blake Wheeler
#29 Patrik Laine — #18 Bryan Little — #28 Jack Roslovic
#85 Mathieu Perreault — #17 Adam Lowry — #13 Brandon Tanev
#48 Brendan Lemieux — #9 Andrew Copp — #82 Mason Appleton
#44 Josh Morrissey — #8 Jacob Trouba
#5 Dmitry Kulikov — #57 Tyler Myers
#83 Sami Niku — #70 Joe Morrow
#37 Connor Hellebuyck
#30 Laurent Brossoit