BOSTON — Bruins center Patrice Bergeron is one of the NHL’s most defensively responsible players, so much so, that it’s almost gravy when he gives the B’s offensive production.
The former Selke Trophy winner is doing that right now and is contributing at both ends of the ice. He’ll look to continue his recent hot streak on Thursday night when the Bruins host the Chicago Blackhawks at TD Garden. The game will mark the Hawks’ first game in Boston since winning the Stanley Cup last June.
Perhaps one of the reasons why the Bruins weren’t able to take down Chicago in that memorable series was that Bergeron wasn’t 100 percent. The forward played through a long list of injuries during the six-game series and ultimately ended up in the hospital. He’s since healed and is back playing at a very high level. Bergeron enters Thursday’s game with six goals and six assists in his last 13 games, a stretch in which the Bruins have gone 12-0-1.
In lineup news, it appears that defenseman Andrej Meszaros will be out of the lineup once again. He was a healthy scratch Monday against Montreal as well.
Here are the rest of the projected lines and defensive pairings for both clubs.
Bruins (49-17-6, 104 points)
Milan Lucic — David Krejci — Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand — Patrice Bergeron — Reilly Smith
Chris Kelly — Carl Soderberg — Loui Eriksson
Daniel Paille — Gregory Campbell — Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara — Dougie Hamilton
Matt Bartkowski — Johnny Boychuk
Torey Krug — Kevan Miller
Blackhawks (42-16-5, 99 points)
Kris Versteeg — Jonathan Toews — Marian Hossa
Patrick Sharp — Michal Handzus — Andrew Shaw
Brandon Saad — Teuvo Teravainen — Ben Smith
Brandon Bollig — Marcus Kruger — Jeremy Morin
Duncan Keith — Keith Seabrook
Johnny Oduya — Niklas Hjalmarsson
Nick Leddy — David Lundblad