BOSTON — The Bruins return to work after a brief holiday break, hosting Detroit in a Black Friday matinee matchup.
Bruins coach Claude Julien declined to answer when asked who would start in goal for this matchup during his press briefing an hour before game time. Sticking with Michigan native Tim Thomas is the most likely scenario, though, which would put Tuukka Rask in line to start Saturday night against Winnipeg.
Thomas is 10-4-0 with a 1.85 GAA and .936 save percentage this year. Detroit's probable starter Jimmy Howard has been almost as good, with an 11-5-1 record, 1.92 GAA and .927 save percentage.
The Bruins come in riding a 10-game win streak, but have had trouble with the powerhouse Wings in the past. Last year Detroit swept a home-and-home series in February, beating the Bruins 6-1 in Boston and 4-2 in Detroit.
"It's a game that we feel is a big game for both teams," Julien said. "They've always given us our fair share of problems. They play us well, and somehow we have to solve that issue."
After Benoit Pouliot scored the winner in the shootout Wednesday in Buffalo, the Bruins are unlikely to make any lineup changes. That would leave Jordan Caron and Steven Kampfer as the healthy scratches.
Patrick Eaves and Mike Commodore have been the odd men out for Detroit, which is also unlikely to make any changes as they come in on a three-game win streak.
Kelly Sutherland and Wes McCauley will be the referees, with Brian Murphy and Steve Miller working the lines.
Projected Bruins lines
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Tyler Seguin
Benoit Pouliot-Chris Kelly-Rich Peverley
Daniel Paille-Gregory Campbell-Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg-Joe Corvo
Andrew Ference-Adam McQuaid
Scratches: Jordan Caron, Steven Kampfer
Projected Red Wings lines
Johan Franzen-Pavel Datsyuk-Todd Bertuzzi
Valtteri Filppula-Henrik Zetterberg-Dan Cleary
Jiri Hudler-Darren Helm-Justin Abdelkader
Drew Miller-Cory Emmerton-Tomas Holmstrom
Nicklas Lidstrom-Ian White
Niklas Kronwall-Brad Stuart
Jonathan Ericsson-Jakub Kindl
Scratches: Patrick Eaves, Mike Commodore