Game Day Preview: Bruins at Senators
They’ve tallied points in two of their first three games on their Canadian road swing, but it’s hardly been an easy trip for the Boston Bruins.
Tuukka Rask struggled in Calgary. Jaroslav Halak did all he could to give the Bruins a chance against Edmonton and Vancouver. The former will get the nod Tuesday night in Ottawa as the injury-riddled Black and Gold look to find their offensive stride against the Senators.
Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak continue to produce at a stellar rate. Joakim Nordstrom has been a nice find as the primary secondary scoring option. The remaining eight forwards are still trying to find their stride during the first month of the 2018-19 regular season. That task will be quite difficult with Charlie McAvoy, David Backes and Kevan Miller out of the lineup for the second straight game.
The Bruins are 3-0-0 in the Atlantic Division, which includes their 6-3 win over the Senators on Oct. 10. They also carry a five-game winning streak against Ottawa heading into Tuesday’s matchup.
Gametime: 7:30 p.m.
TV/Radio: NESN/98.5 The Sports Hub
Records: Bruins 4-2-2 (10 points), Senators 4-2-1 (9 points)
Location: Canadian Tire Centre
Bruins projected lines
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Pastrnak
Danton Heinen-David Krejci-Jake DeBrusk
Anders Bjork-Joakim Nordstrom-Chris Wagner
Ryan Donato-Sean Kuraly-Noel Acciari
Zdeno Chara-Brandon Carlo
Matt Grzelcyk-Steven Kampfer
John Moore-Urho Vaakanainen
Senators projected lines
Mikkel Boedker-Matt Duchene-Colin White
Ryan Dzingel-Chris Tierney-Mark Stone
Alex Formenton-Paul Carey-Bobby Ryan
Magnus Paajarvi-Zach Smith-Tom Pyatt
Thomas Chabot-Dylan DeMelo
Maxime Lajoie-Chris Wideman
Mark Borowiecki-Christian Jaros
– Riding Halak’s hot hand is tempting, but head coach Bruce Cassidy is going with Rask against the Senators. There’s no denying that Rask needs to be better, especially after his last start six days ago in Calgary. Sure, the Finn bounced back after giving up three goals in the first, but his roller-coaster performance put the Bruins in a tough spot in their worst performance of this road trip. The 2014 Vezina Winner has done well in his career against the Senators (12-7-4, 2.20 GAA, .924 SV%, 3 SO), which bodes nicely for a potential bounce-back effort.
– The Bruins’ power play looked fluid during their four-game win streak. It’s been anything but during the three-game road trip as they carry an 0-for-11 skid to the Canadian capital. Though they’ve had quality chances at times, the Bruins had difficulties getting into their power play set up in Western Canada. Torey Krug’s eventual return will help, but they have to make the most out of what they have against a Sens squad that ranks 20th on the penalty kill (76.9 percent).