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  • Game Day Preview: Bruins at Canucks


    Game Day Preview: Bruins at Canucks

    Tim Rosenthal March 13, 2017

    Fourteen games remain for the Boston Bruins in 2016-17. Over the next two weeks, Bruce Cassidy and company will face a tough stretch that includes the likes of the Oilers, Flames, Maple Leafs, Senators, Lightning and Islanders.

    First things first, however, is a matchup with the lowly Canucks to kick off their three-game swing through Western Canada. The Black and Gold took the previous meeting in Boston back in February.

    Although Ryan Spooner began practicing with the club for the first time since suffering a concussion last week in Ottawa, the third line center will miss tonight’s game but should return sooner rather than later. Tim Schaller, who suffered a lower-body injury against the Red Wings, did not accompany the B’s to at least start their three-game road trip.

    With six players on injured reserve, including former Bruin Loui Eriksson, the Canucks are looking at these next three-plus weeks as a chance to improve their draft lottery chances. Though they are a respectable 18-11-6 at home, Vancouver is just 3-4-3 in its last 10 games and have struggled to put the puck in the net all season long. Only the Devils (150) and Avalanche (139) have fewer goals than the struggling Canucks (152).

    Gametime: 10:00 pm
    TV/Radio: NESN/98.5 The Sports Hub
    Records: Bruins 36-26-6 (78 points), Canucks 28-31-9 (67 points)
    Location: Rogers Arena

    Bruins projected lines

    Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Backes
    Drew Stafford-David Krejci-David Pastrnak
    Matt Beleskey-Riley Nash-Frank Vatrano
    Peter Cehlarik-Dominic Moore-Jimmy Hayes

    Zdeno Chara-Brandon Carlo
    Torey Krug-Adam McQuaid
    Kevan Miller-Colin Miller

    Tuukka Rask
    Anton Khudobin

    Canucks projected lines

    Daniel Sedin-Henrik Sedin-Michael Chaput
    Sven Baertschi-Bo Horvat-Reid Boucher
    Joseph Cramarossa-Brandon Sutter-Jayson Megna
    Alex Biega-Joe Labate-Alexandre Grenier

    Alex Edler-Troy Stecher
    Luca Sbisa-Philip Larsen
    Ben Hutton-Nikita Tryamkin

    Ryan Miller
    Richard Bachman

    Tonight’s storylines

    – Once again, Cassidy went back to changing his lines against the Flyers and for the most part, it paid off. This morning, the interim coach jumbled up his third and fourth lines. Riley Nash centered Matt Beleskey and Frank Vatrano on the third line while Dominic Moore, Jimmy Hayes and Peter Cehlarik – who will likely make his return to the lineup after being a healthy scratch the last two games – rounded out the bottom six.

    – In particular of those six aforementioned forwards, Beleskey had a strong game against the Flyers giving the Bruins early energy with a big hit and a fight and creating a few scoring chances of his own. In a year where he battled injuries and inconsistent play, the former Ducks winger provided a glimpse of the intensity he displayed for much of his first season in Boston. The Bruins could certainly use that from Beleskey again tonight as he tries to insert his way back as a regular on either the third or fourth line.

    – Tuukka Rask took his optional for this morning’s skate around but should get the start between the pipes this evening. Though he sports a 2.39 goals against average and .910 save percentage lifetime vs. the Canucks, the 2014 Vezina Winner is just 2-4-1 in seven career games against the 2011 and 2012 President’s Trophy winners. He’ll make his first start against Vancouver this season and will likely split duties with Anton Khudobin when the Bruins head to Alberta for a back-to-back slate against the Oilers and Flames.

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    Tim Rosenthal

    Tim Rosenthal serves as the Managing Editor of Bruins Daily. He started contributing videos to the site in 2010 before fully coming on board during the Bruins' Stanley Cup run in 2011. His bylines over the last decade have been featured on Boston.com, FoxSports.com, College Hockey News, Patch and Inside Hockey. You can follow Tim on Twitter @_TimRosenthal.


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