Tonight the Bruins look for revenge and redemption as they finish off the series against the Toronto Maple Leafs in hopes of taking the series rather than splitting it after dropping Saturday night’s game 3-2.
In Saturday’s meeting the Bruins failed to play a full sixty minutes, despite having a dominant third period they were unable to overcome the deficit instilled in the first period. To stand a chance at beating the Maple Leafs tonight they are going to have to get solid efforts from everyone on the team and make due with all of the line changes coach Claude Julien has in store.
For starters, on top of keeping Phil Kessel under wraps, the Bruins will also have to keep their eye on Joffrey Lopul who is making his debut once again after being suspended the past two games. Based on lines from practice the Bruins will be looking something similar to this:
With the changing of the lines, the Bruins have one of two options, excel and become an unbeatable force or become completely atrocious and go back to square one. With the addition of Marchand the Bruins add some speed and quick mitts to the game, a serious advantage for guys like David Krejci who have been considerably on their game all season but have been stuck with underperforming linemates.
The addition of Daniel Paille to the Bergeron-Seguin line will provide offensive depth and added speed which should help create a lot of golden opportunities and some great two-on-one breaks pairing the speed of Segun and Paille with the perfect passes from Patrice. The second line could be your driving force despite the changing of Brad and Dan.
Milan Lucic being placed on the third line could be the best thing that happens to the power forward this season or it could just sink the Bruins and do more harm than good. The Bruins power house hasn’t had the strongest net front presence throughout the season and has only been in a single decent fight all season, something that is unheard of from the big and bad Bruin. Throwing him into an already struggling third line should prove to be the kick in the pants Lucic needs to get back on track and back into the scoring column.
The Bruins announced today that they have sent forward Ryan Spooner back down to Providence after appearing in the past three games with the Bruins. His peak was centering a struggling first line with Lucic and Horton as linemates in the absence of David Krejci. He recorded a career-high 20:00+ of ice time and played aggressive two-way hockey, somethinf the Bruins have been lacking as of late.
The Bruins continue to be without forward Chris Kelly and defenseman Adam McQuaid who are out for at least 4 weeks each, Kelly’s injury lasting the better end of 8-10. Defenseman Johnny Boychuk was absent from Sunday’s practice, but is a possibility for tonight’s game. He sat out Saturday night after taking a Tyler Seguin shot ot the right leg in practice the day before.
Tonight coverage begins on NESN at 6:30PM ET with commentary from Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley, face off being set for 7:30. If you can’t watch the game, be sure to tune into 98.5 the Sports Hub and listen in. Let’s hope the Bruins can turn the ship around and get the ball rolling once again heading into the end of the season.