To say the Boston Bruins have been bitten by the injury bug would be a massive understatement.
The Bruins have been without a number of key players of late, including David Krejci, David Backes and Adam McQuaid. Not to mention, players such as Brad Marchand are taking the ice, but aren’t 100 percent due to nagging ailments.
Boston’s play hasn’t been alarmingly altered by the load of injuries, but the B’s have struggled to string wins together through the first month of the season. The Bruins’ struggles continued Saturday night, as they fell to the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-1 at TD Garden, marking their third straight loss.
Whether it be poor puck luck or any other issue, Boston’s lack of scoring has been a cause for concern lately. While the Bruins have held their own in the absence of their missing players, one of the team’s leaders doesn’t believe injuries can be used as a viable excuse.
“Lately the results haven’t been there and it’s a game of results,” goalie Tuukka Rask said, as seen on NESN’s Bruins postgame coverage. “We have to find ways to get wins. We can’t hide behind any injuries or anything, we just have to play with the guys who are out there and find a way to win.”
The Bruins’ upcoming schedule certainly doesn’t help the team in its effort to right the ship. The Black and Gold embark on a three-game West Coast road trip starting with a Wednesday night tilt against the Anaheim Ducks. A poor road trip potentially could be deflating for Boston, but Rask isn’t worried about his team.
“We’re not nervous,” he said. “You’ve got to look at the positive side. We haven’t been playing bad hockey. There’s been bad five, ten minutes, but it hasn’t been the work ethic or anything like that. We’ve been making plays and battling hard out there. So I don’t think it’s going to be an issue that it’s going to snowball. We’ve been here before, we just have to dig deeper and find ways to win hockey games. But it’s definitely not going to be an easy road trip.”
Here are some other notes from Bruins-Maple Leafs:
— Boston posted a season-high 39 shots in the contest. It also squandered four power-play opportunities, including a 5-on-3 advantage early in the third period.
— The B’s particularly have struggled with Eastern Conference opponents this season. Through six games against the East, Boston is 0-3-3 while allowing an average of 3.67 goals per game.
— Danton Heinen continues to see his role increased on the power play. The 22-year-old logged 4:08 of power-play time on ice against the Leafs.
— James van Riemsdyk remains a thorn in the Bruins’ side, logging a goal and an assist in the win. Through 30 career games against the B’s, JVR has posted 14 goals and 10 assists.
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