Bruins Focus: Panthers, Maple Leafs, Capitals Next Opponents For Boston

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November 10, 2019

The Bruins are in a bit of a slump.

Boston is 0-2-1 in its last three games, including a loss against the lowly Detroit Red Wings.

There is some good news, though. The top line still is racking up points game in and game out, with David Pastrnak leading the way with 30 points (15 goals, 15 assists). Brad Marchand recorded his second five-point game in the Bruins’ Nov. 2 win over the Ottawa Senators, making him the first player in franchise history to have multiple multi-point games through the team’s first 14 contests.

The Bruins will look to turn things around with a three-game week that includes a matchup with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Let?s take a look at what?s on deck for the Bruins.

Tuesday, Nov. 12 vs. Florida Panthers, 7 p.m. ET
Friday, Nov. 15 at Toronto Maple Leafs, 7 p.m. ET
Saturday, Nov. 16 vs. Washington Capitals, 7 p.m. ET

What You Need To Know
Tuesday will mark the first time Noel Acciari returns to TD Garden with his new team. Acciari, who spent his first four NHL seasons with the Bruins, signed a three-year contract with the Panthers in the offseason. The former Bruin has four goals in 14 games while Florida sits in fourth place in the Atlantic Division with an 8-4-5 record. The Panthers are coming off an up-and-down weekend in New York and will look to regain momentum beginning their week against a struggling Bruins team.

It’s always a playoff-like atmosphere when the Maple Leafs and Bruins go toe to toe, so Friday likely will be no different. This will be the third time the rivals meet this season, with each team winning a game. As of Sunday, Toronto sits just two points behind Boston for first place in the Atlantic Division, but was without its third-best scorer and assist leader Mitch Marner with an ankle injury. The team announced he’ll be out at least four weeks, so the Maple Leafs will need to pick up the slack if he is to miss more than just one game.

The Caps penalty kill has been solid despite losing Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen in the offseason. They were ranked eighth in the NHL with an  85.7 percent kill through their first 17 games. Washington also has won six straight and has three games before its date with Boston, so the Capitals will be looking to carry that momentum throughout their week and end it on a strong note.

Who Bruins Need To Watch Out For
Sasha Barkov has turned his season around after going 12 straight games without finding the back of the net. He’s now scored in each of Florida’s last five. While the Panthers don’t have anyone on their roster with double-digit goals, they do feature seven players in double-digit points including Barkov (22) and Jonathan Huberdeau (21).

Auston Matthews has amassed points in four of his last five games, but was held to just one assist during the Leafs’ game against the Bruins on Oct. 19. While the team remains without John Tavares, they still have a strong offense with Morgan Rielly, who scored twice against the B’s on Oct. 19, and William Nylander.

Alex Ovechkin always is a threat to opposing teams and the 2019-20 season is proving to be no different. The left winger has 22 points (13 goals, nine assists) through 18 games and has scored two goals three separate times. John Carlson is an assist machine with 20 already on the season. So the Bruins defense certainly will have their hands full trying to contain the strong Washington offense.

Thumbnail photo via Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports Images
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