The Bruins already had plenty of motivation for Saturday’s game against Carolina after the Hurricanes won a Game 7 overtime thriller at the TD Garden in the Eastern Conference semifinals last spring. Now, the Bruins enter this game with even more to prove after being embarrassed in Thursday’s season opener, losing 4-1 to the Capitals.
Boston was thoroughly outplayed by Washington and must prove to its fans and itself that Thursday was just one of those nights.
The Hurricanes are also coming off a lackluster effort against Philadelphia on Friday night. They were shut out 2-0 by the Flyers at the RBC Center in Raleigh. So they too are looking to redeem themselves.
This game also marks the return of the popular Aaron Ward and face-off specialist Stephane Yelle. Ward, of course, was the beneficiary of the infamous sucker punch from Hurricanes forward Scott Walker last year. When the 2009-10 schedule was announced, many fans probably circled this date as the game the Bruins would exact revenge for that and for Walker scoring the overtime winner in Game 7, but since Ward and Walker are teammates now, they most likely will focus on getting revenge with a win and not a pummeling of the pesky winger.
Saturday also marks the first game of the season broadcast on NESN, so don’t forget to tune in for the call with Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley.
When and Where
7:05 p.m. ET (NESN), Saturday, Oct. 3
TD Garden, Boston, Mass.
Head to Head
This is the first game of the season between the Hurricanes and Bruins. Last season, the Bruins swept the regular-season series (4-0-0) but lost in seven games to the Hurricanes in the conference semifinals.
The Bruins lead the all-time series against the Hurricanes/Whalers 89-63-16-2.
The Bruins will play the Hurricanes again on Jan. 24 and March 16 at Carolina, and on April 10 at the TD Garden.
SkinnyThe Bruins simply need a 60-minute effort on Saturday against Carolina, something they didn’t even come close to achieving on Thursday.
Part of that effort will need to be focused on special teams. On Thursday, Boston allowed two power-play goals on four chances while failing to convert on the man advantage, going 0-for-5.
The Bruins will also need to generate more chances in the offensive zone after getting outshot 34-20 on Thursday.
The Hurricanes’ power play looked even worse than the Bruins on Friday night, going 0-for-8. Their penalty kill suffered as well. Both of the Flyers’ goals were scored on the power play, as Philly went 2-for-4.
|Left Wing||Center||Right Wing|
|Milan Lucic||Marc Savard||Marco Sturm|
|Blake Wheeler||David Krejci||Michael Ryder|
|Mark Recchi||Patrice Bergeron||Chuck Kobasew|
|Shawn Thornton||Steve Begin||Byron Bitz|
|Zdeno Chara||Derek Morris|
|Andrew Ference||Dennis Wideman|
|Mark Stuart-Matt Hunwick||Johnny Boychuk|
|Left Wing||Center||Right Wing|
|Ray Whitney||Eric Staal||Erik Cole|
|Tuomo Ruutu||Matt Cullen||Jussi Jokinen|
|Sergei Samsonov||Rod Brind’Amour||Chad LaRose|
|Scott Walker||Stephane Yelle||Tom Kostopoulos|
|Joe Corvo||Tom Gleason|
|Aaron Ward||Jay Harrison|
|Niclas Wallin||Andrew Alberts|
Patrice Bergeron was the only Bruin to light the lamp on Thursday.
Steve Begin and Mark Stuart each had an assist on the Bergeron goal.
The Canes were shut out in their first game.
Ray Whitney led Carolina with 77 points in 2008-09.
Tim Thomas is 0-1-0 with a 4.00 GAA and an .880 save percentage.
Cam Ward is 0-1-0 with a 2.07 GAA and a .926 save percentage.
Black and BlueBruins
No injuries to report at this time.
Defenseman Joni Pitkanen is recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery on Sept. 10 and is day-to-day.
“You’ve got to be focused for 60 minutes in this game, and we weren’t. I think that’s the challenge that we have going into the next game.”
–Bruins head coach Claude Julien after Thursday’s loss to Washington
The Bruins have what it takes to recover from their opening-night debacle.
The Bruins need to show some determination.
The Bruins recuperated on Friday’s off day.
Did the hype get to the Bruins already?
Here’s a great Bruins blog.
Aaron Ward and Stephane Yelle return as Hurricanes.
The Hurricanes were shut out in their season opener Friday night.
Two quick Flyers power-play goals were the difference on Friday night.
The Habs are in big trouble already as Andrei Markov is out for four months.
Here’s the latest from the legendary Red Fisher.
Is “The Monster” ready to reign supreme in Toronto?
Alex Kovalev is blogging for RDS.ca.
Is the NHLPA about to be blown up?
Former Bruins center Adam Oates is now an assistant coach in Tampa.
OutlookLook for a much better effort from the Bruins on Saturday night. We have learned in the past that Claude Julien doesn’t allow his teams to have many back-to-back stinkers, and the same will hold true on Saturday. The Hurricanes will be looking to bounce back as well, so the Bruins will need to be focused with emotion and desire from the opening face-off.
That means Marc Savard, Milan Lucic, Zdeno Chara, David Krejci, Tim Thomas and the rest of the Bruins need to step it up on Saturday and in coming games. Someone or some players need to take the torch and carry it, both on the score sheet and in a leadership role. This team is full of leaders. Now they just need to go out and do it.