Tonight the Bruins are in New York City (New York City!) to face the Rangers
The Bruins have been less than spectacular over the last few weeks, with a 3-2-2 record over the last seven games, however they beat both the Washington Capitals and the New York Islanders in 60 minutes over the last two games, so that is a very positive trend. While they did win the last two, they have frustratingly remained 1 point behind the horrible Habs, despite being the better team, relegating themselves to the 1st wildcard position in the Eastern Conference. Tonight, the Bruins will have an opportunity to briefly catch up the game in hand, and possibly return to the 3rd playoff spot in the Atlantic Division.
Last time they played the Rangers, Filip Chytil and Charlie McAvoy collided in Tuukka’s crease, knocking him out of the game, and giving him a concussion. So this game I think we can expect both those players to be fired into the sun, and Jaroslav Halak to start in net.
We did see some Bruin milestones recently, Patrice Bergeron played his 1000th NHL game last night, scoring two goals in the process. Tuukka Rask has won 254 games as the Bruins goaltender, surpassing Tiny Thompson’s 252 as a Bruin (surpassing Frank Brimsek’s entire career, but leaving Tuukka behind Ken Dryden’s 258 for 52nd of all time)
So what do the lines look like?
Joakim Nordstrom is still in the lineup after returning from a lower body injury. He had displaced Danton Heinen, who will reportedly return tonight in David Backes’ spot on the right. Call-ups Peter Cehlárik and Trent Frederic will continue where they have played. Defenseman John Moore is sat out last game to allow Matt Grzelcyk to slot back in, and that appears to continue to be the case tonight. The defensive pairings were jumbled last game, getting the Chara-Carlo pairing back together – this seems likely to continue tonight.
|Bruins Forward Lines|
|Bruins Defensive pairs|
|#41 Jaroslav Halak||(#40 Tuukka Rask)|
This evening’s opponent are the Rangers. They are reasonably healthy right now, missing only Fredrik Claesson, Brett Howden, and have traded away Cody McLeod for a
bag of pucks seventh round pick, now that Adam McQuaid can take on some of his duties as Mr Face-punchy dude.
(As a 4th line winger, he is not so difficult to back-fill.)
#20 Chris Kreider — #93 Mika Zibanejad — #36 Mats Zuccarello
#89 Pavel Buchnevich — #13 Kevin Hayes — #17 Jesper Fast
#72 Filip Chytil — #16 Ryan Strome — #90 Vladislav Namestnikov
#24 Boo Nieves — #26 Jimmy Vesey
#18 Marc Staal — #77 Anthony DeAngelo
#76 Brady Skjei — #54 Adam McQuaid
#42 Brendan Smith — #22 Kevin Shattenkirk
#44 Neal Pionk
#40 Alexandar Georgiev
#30 Henrik Lundqvist