February 14th, 2012 by

Bruins and Rangers set for Valentines Day tilt

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa) Head coach Claude Julien and the Bruins look to hit the road on a high note with a Valentines Day victory over the New York Rangers at TD Garden.

BOSTON — The Boston-New York rivalry (in general) is always something to look forward to for sports fans of both cities. Tuesday’s game between the Bruins and Rangers is no exception.

Coming in to their Jan. 21 tilt at the TD Garden — the first meeting of the season — the Bruins were looking to surpass the Rangers in the Eastern Conference standings. However, the Blueshirts capitalized on a Andrew Ference major for hitting Ryan McDonagh from behind, and Marian Gaborik scored the game-winner at 4:56 of overtime to extend their lead to two points in the standings.

Fast forward almost a month later. The Black and Gold have been caught in mediocrity and the Rangers have a seven-point cushion in the standings; going 7-2-1 in their last 10.

Case in point, this is a game for the Rangers to put even more distance in the standings, and for the Bruins to get some momentum before their six-game road trip.

“We want to head on the road on a good note,” said Bruins forward Milan Lucic on the emphasis of Tuesday’s game. “We have a six game road trip that actually starts tomorrow [in Montreal] so we want to get the job done here against the best team in the East and they are playing really well. But we want to get back to getting that consistency that we had in November and December.”

After Saturday’s shootout win against the Nashville Predators, Boston has another chance to get their second straight victory; something they haven’t done since defeating the Canadiens and Winnipeg Jets on Jan. 10 and 12.

While the Black and Gold would like nothing more than a W before traveling to Montreal after the game, head coach Claude Julien isn’t too concerned with trying to make up some ground in the standings.

“I don’t think we’re necessarily looking at this game that we need to catchup up to these guys, but rather that we need to play well and play well enough to have a chance to win the game, it’s as simple as that,” he said.

“Right now, our issues are a lot more than worrying about how far ahead they are and how much we need to catch up. We just have to go out there and play. And if we play well and do the job that we know we can then hopefully we can come out with a win and the rest can take care of itself.”

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