Bruins Welcome Sidney Crosby, Penguins to Boston

by

Bruins Welcome Sidney Crosby, Penguins to Boston The Bruins welcome the defending Stanley Cup champions to the TD Garden on Tuesday night when they host Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Bruins snapped a three-game losing streak on Saturday with a 4-2 win over the Sabres. Meanwhile, the Penguins come in riding their first losing streak of the season, falling in Los Angeles last Thursday and in San Jose on Saturday. This contest promises to be another tough test for the Bruins as they play the third game of a four-game homestand.

When And Where

Tuesday, Nov. 10, 7 p.m. (Versus)
TD Garden, Boston, Mass.

Records

Bruins (7-7-2, 16 points, tied for second in Northeast Division, tied for ninth in Eastern Conference)
Penguins (12-5-0, 24 points, first in Atlantic Division, tied for first in Eastern Conference)

Head to Head

This is the first of four meetings between the Penguins and Bruins. They will meet again on Saturday in Pittsburgh. The Penguins and Bruins then don?t face each other again until March 7, when they play in Pittsburgh, then again on March 18 at the TD Garden.

The Bruins were 2-1-1 against the Penguins last season.

Boston leads the all-time series 99-51-21-3.

Skinny

The Bruins finally found their offensive groove on Saturday night, and their invisible power play reappeared in a 4-2 win over the Northeast Division-leading Buffalo Sabres. Now they have the chance to start their first winning streak of the 2009-10 season.

?When you score goals, obviously, it helps build momentum and confidence in the locker room,? captain Zdeno Chara said following the win over the Sabres. ?It was a really important game for us.?

Chara scored his first goal of the season, and forward Marco Sturm snapped a 12-game scoreless skid. The team, as a whole, is playing better as well, and the Bruins will look to keep it going against a suddenly reeling Penguins squad.

Pittsburgh has proven before it can battle through injuries, but its human side has been showing recently. Last time out, the Penguins were handed a 5-0 shellacking by the Sharks and have been outscored 10-2 in their last two games. But you won?t find any self-pity in the Pittsburgh dressing room, despite the fact the Penguins are missing 2009 Conn Smythe winner and Hart Trophy finalist Evgeni Malkin, as well as many other key players.

"You can't look for an excuse," Martin Skoula said. "You have to perform every night. It's not like somebody's going to give you something for free."

Projected Lineups

Bruins
Forwards
Marco Sturm–Patrice Bergeron–Mark Recchi
Vladimir Sobotka–David Krejci–Blake Wheeler
Daniel Paille–Trent Whitfield–Brad Marchand
Shawn Thornton–Steve Begin–Byron Bitz

Defensemen
Zdeno Chara–Derek Morris
Matt Hunwick–Dennis Wideman
Mark Stuart–Andrew Ference

Goaltenders
Tim Thomas
Tuukka Rask

Penguins
Forwards
Chris Kunitz–Sidney Crosby–Bill Guerin
Matt Cooke–Jordan Staal–Michael Rupp
Ruslan Fedotenko–Craig Adams–Pascal Dupuis
Eric Godard–Chris Conner–Chris Bourque

Defensemen

Brooks Orpik–Alex Goligoski
Mark Eaton–Martin Skoula
Jay McKee –Deryk Engelland

Goaltenders
Marc-Andre Fleury
Brent Johnson

Goaltender Matchup

Bruins
Tim Thomas is 4-6-1 with a 2.44 GAA and .916 save percentage. Thomas has one shutout this season.

Tuukka Rask is 3-1-1 with a 2.33 GAA and .919 save percentage. Rask has one shutout this season.

Penguins
Marc-Andre Fleury is 10-4-0 with a 2.52 GAA and .904 save percentage.

Brent Johnson is 2-1-0 with a 2.38 GAA and .915 save percentage.

Stat Sheet

Bruins
Forward Patrice Bergeron leads the team in goals (five) and points (10).

Defensemen Derek Morris and Zdeno Chara both have a goal and eight assists. That assist total leads the team, and the nine points are most from defensemen.

Forwards Marco Sturm (three goals, five assists), Steve Begin (two goals, six assists) and Blake Wheeler (four goals, four assists) are tied for third in points.

The Bruins have been outscored 39-36 this season. They are averaging 2.25 goals per game and 2.44 goals against.

The Bruins broke an 0-for-20 streak on the power play Saturday night with two goals on the man advantage. They are now 8-for-58 on the power play with a 13.8 percent success rate.

The Bruins' penalty kill continued its amazing success Saturday night, killing off all eight of Buffalo?s power plays. The Bruins have now killed off 26 of the last 27 power plays they?ve faced (96.3 percent), allowing 11 power-play goals on 59 chances this year.

The Bruins are 5-4-1 at home this season.

The Bruins are 1-3-2 against the Atlantic Division.

The Bruins are 4-3-2 against the Eastern Conference this season.

Penguins
Sidney Crosby leads the team in goals (nine) and points (16).

Injured forward Evgeni Malkin leads the team with 10 assists and is second in points with 14.

Defenseman Alex Goligoski is third on the team with 13 points. Goligoski leads the Penguins' blue line in points, goals and assists.

The Penguins have outscored their opponents 50-44. They are averaging 2.94 goals per game and have allowed 2.59 per game.

The Penguins' power play is struggling, as it is 0-for-21 in its last four games. The Penguins are 11-for-75 on the man advantage this season, scoring at a 14.7 percent clip.

The Penguins have allowed 13 goals on 72 power-play chances against them for an 81.9 percent success rate.

Black and Blue

Bruins
Forward Marc Savard is expected to miss three to four more weeks with a broken left foot. He recently removed the protective boot he was wearing.

Forward Milan Lucic remains on injured reserve with a broken right index finger but has been practicing alone and is eyeing a Nov. 19 return.

Forward Michael Ryder missed practice Monday with flu-like symptoms and is a game-time decision. Chances are, he will play.

Sabres
Evgeni Malkin remains out with an injured shoulder and could miss two more weeks. He has been out since Oct. 29.

Maxime Talbot remains on injured reserve after offseason shoulder surgery. He is eyeing a late November return.

Forward Tyler Kennedy is doubtful with a groin injury.

Defenseman Sergei Gonchar remains on injured reserve with a broken left wrist and is expected to be out two more weeks.

Defenseman Kris Letang is expected to miss the game with an upper-body injury and is day-to-day.

This Date in Bruins History

On Nov.10, 1977, Terry O?Reilly scores first NHL hat trick in a 5-2 win over Los Angeles.

Overheard

"When it?s deserved, we get it, and it's very open door that way, and we appreciate that as players. There's no gray area, and if we need to be told, he tells us. As a man, you like to be told when you're not doing something right, and when you're doing something right, nothing is said, and you go about your business."
-Forward Shawn Thornton on Claude Julien?s coaching approach

Press Box

Bruins
David Krejci is back from the H1N1 virus, but Michael Ryder may be out with the flu.

Head coach Claude Julien helped his team battle through its recent slump.

The Bruins are putting the pieces together.

Tim Thomas has been battling off-ice adversity.

Penguins
The Penguins are changing things up a bit.

Kris Letang is out for two weeks.

A Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Penguins beat writer received the Elmer Ferguson Award.

NHL

Devils GM Lou Lamoriello was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

NHL.com has full Hall of Fame coverage.

Here's some NHL news, including an update on Marc Savard's contract negotiations.

J.S. Giguere has no plans of being a backup in Anaheim.

Are the Senators yapping to the referees too much?

Wayne Gretzky decided to put his differences with the NHL aside and show up for his friends at the Hall of Fame inductions.

Outlook

The Bruins need to really feed off the confidence they built on Saturday night. Just as they did throughout their three-game losing streak and scoring slump, they must maintain their game plan and continue pushing. That was the key to snapping out of this recent funk, and that will be the key going forward.

When the Bruins play their game and don?t let setbacks or other teams set the tone or alter their game plan, they usually win. The goaltending, team defense and penalty kill never seemed to waver during those three losses. Now that the power play and offense seem to be back, the Bruins must do the same in those critical areas.

Luckily for the Bruins, they face a tired, banged-up Penguins squad. Still, they must remember that the Penguins have pride and will not roll over by any means. Another hard-fought, complete 60-minute effort will be needed.

Previous Article

Rasheed Wallace Adjusting to New Role With Celtics

Next Article

Eastern Europe Well Represented By Bruins, NHL

Picked For You