The Boston Bruins didn’t have much time to lament Thursday’s loss to the Washington Capitals, as they’re now tasked with an important Original Six matchup Saturday night.
The B’s are in Toronto for a tilt with the Maple Leafs at Scotiabank Arena.
Although the Maple Leafs have a game in hand on the Bruins, Boston trails Toronto for second place in the Atlantic Division by just four points. That means a win Saturday could put the third-place B’s in striking distance to move up in the divisional ranks in the not-too-distant future.
Just in time for the bout, the Bruins will get a key defenseman back in Charlie McAvoy, who missed the previous seven games with a foot injury. He is expected to skate on the top line pairing with Zdeno Chara. John Moore will be the odd man out, meaning the Bruins will roll with the defensive pairings they utilized for much of last season.
The forward lines are expected to remain similar, if not identical, to Thursday’s game.
Tuukka Rask will be in net for the Bruins and will be countered by Michael Hutchinson.
Here are the projected lines and defense pairings for Saturday night’s Bruins-Maple Leafs game.
BOSTON BRUINS (25-15-4)
Brad Marchand–Patrice Bergeron–David Pastrnak
Jake DeBrusk–David Krejci–David Backes
Danton Heinen–Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson–Ryan Donato
Sean Kuraly –Noel Acciari– Chris Wagner
Zdeno Chara–Charlie McAvoy
Torey Krug–Brandon Carlo
Matt Grzelcyk–Kevan Miller
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (28-13-2)
Zach Hyman–John Tavares–Mitch Marner
Andreas Johnsson–Auston Matthews–Kasperi Kapanen
Patrick Marleau–Nazem Kadri–William Nylander
Par Lindholm–Frederik Gauthier–Connor Brown
Morgan Rielly–Ron Hainsey
Jake Gardiner–Nikita Zaitsev
Travis Dermott–Igor Ozhiganov
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images