Finally the Boston Bruins are playing the way everyone expected them to play. After a 3-7 start to the season the Bruins have rolled off four-straight wins and are back to .500 for the first time since the NHL’s opening week.
Tonight the Bruins continue their five-game-home-stand as the Buffalo Sabres come to town. The Sabres had some big signings in the off-season and many picked them to win the Northeast division. Buffalo has yet to disappoint as they come into tonight with a 10-5-0 record and are one point behind the division leading Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Bruins won their last contest on Thursday when they beat the Edmonton Oilers 6-3. Buffalo played last night at home and beat the Ottawa Senators 5-1 behind 36 saves from Jhonas Enroth.
Puck Drop: 7:00 p.m.
TV: NESN Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub
2010-11 Season Series: Sabres 4-2
Expected Goalies: Tim Thomas vs. Ryan Miller
What to watch for Bruins:
After going 4-31 in their first seven games on the power play, the Bruins have turned things around with the extra attacker. In their last seven contests the Bruins have converted on six of their last 25 power plays and now sit 12th in the NHL with a 18.5 success rate. The Bruins will need to continue to score on the power play if they look to take down a talent Sabres team.
After Tuukka Rask made back-to-back starts Tim Thomas returns to the crease as he looks to pick up his sixth win of the season. Thomas’ lifetime numbers against Buffalo are not that solid as he enters tonight’s tilt with a 8-9-4 record and a 3.17 goals against average. With exactly a week off Thomas should be nice and rested for tonight’s game.
No one knows what has gotten into Milan Lucic lately, but no one is complaining. After a very slow start Lucic has caught fire and now has eight goals on the year. Lucic has scored in six straight games for the Bruins. If Lucic can once again light the lamp for the black and gold tonight it may be another fun night at the TD Garden for the Bruins.
What to watch for Sabres:
After sitting out last night’s win Ryan Miller returns between the pipes for Buffalo. Miller won his last start on Tuesday against Winnipeg after losing four-in-a-row. Miller has been shaky for a solid Sabres team, something no one expected. The Bruins will need to get to Miller early and often or else it could be a long night for the defending Stanley Cup Champions.
Not many players have gotten off to a better start then Thomas Vanek. The seventh year forward has 19 points including 10 goals in 15 games for the Sabres. Vanek has been up and down in his tenure in Buffalo, but seems to finally be living up to the potential that he has. Vanek is a 30 goal threat every year, and if Vanek keeps it going, he will easily surpass 30 goals.
Gameday links Bruins:
Preview tonight’s game with Days Of Y’orr as their two favorite teams battle it out tonight.
Zach Hamill’s play impacting the Bruins. (Stanleycupofchowder.com)
Ty Anderson of Hockeybuzz.com takes a look at tonight’s battle between Northeast division rivals.
Gameday links Bruins: