The Bruins will look to salvage a split of their two-game road trip and pull into a tie for first place in the Northeast Division when they take on the Canadiens in Montreal on Thursday.
With both teams playing Wednesday night, neither squad held a morning skate on Thursday, but a matchup of two of the hottest goaltenders in the league is expected.
The Montreal Gazette reported that Carey Price will be in goal for the Habs, while Tim Thomas is expected to get the start for Boston. Thomas got a breather on Wednesday and watched fellow netminder Tuukka Rask kick aside 32 shots in a 3-2 loss to the Sabres. Thomas leads the NHL in just about every goaltending category this year at 14-2-3 with a 1.51 GAA, .954 save percentage and five shutouts, but is just 8-13-3 with a 3.02 GAA and a .906 save percentage in his career against Montreal.
Price actually tops the NHL in wins (at 17, tied with Jimmy Howard) and isn't far behind Thomas in the other categories at 17-9-2 with a 2.07 GAA, .931 save percentage and four shutouts. He's had tremendous success against his club's top rival, going 10-2-2 with 2.30 GAA and a. 927 save percentage against the Bruins.
Besides the goaltending, the other major storyline for the Bruins is the status of prized rookie Tyler Seguin. He missed Saturday's game with what the club announced as flu-like symptoms but was a healthy scratch for the first time Wednesday in Buffalo.
Bruins coach Claude Julien told reporters on Thursday that it would be a game-time decision again whether Seguin or Daniel Paille would play against the Habs. Because Paille has been ineffective in limited action this season, the betting here is that Seguin will return to the lineup. Julien will have to hope that the one-game benching will be enough to drive home whatever lessons he wanted the rookie to learn from watching the game from up top in the press box. But it won't be until after pregame warmups that Julien's final decision on who will play will be known.
The Canadiens also assigned forward Dustin Boyd to their AHL affiliate in Hamilton on Thursday. That leaves them with just two extra skaters to scratch. Defenseman Yannick Weber and forward Tom Pyatt were the odd men out in Wednesday's loss against Philadelphia.
Projected Bruins lines:
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Mark Recchi-Patrice Bergeron-Blake Wheeler
Tyler Seguin/Daniel Paille-Marc Savard-Michael Ryder
Brad Marchand-Gregory Campbell-Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg-Steven Kampfer
Andrew Ference-Adam McQuaid
Scratches: Paille/Seguin, Mark Stuart (hand)
Projected Canadiens lines:
Michael Cammalleri-Tomas Plekanec-Andrei Kostitsyn
Max Pacioretty-Scott Gomez-Brian Gionta
Benoit Pouliot-Lars Eller-Mathieu Darche
Travis Moen-Jeff Halpern-Maxim Lapierre
Roman Hamrlik-Jaroslav Spacek
Hal Gill-Josh Gorges
Alexandre Picard-P.K. Subban
Scratches: Yannick Weber, Tom Pyatt
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