Their first opponent back at TD Garden: the Los Angeles Kings, whom the B’s smacked around 7-0 exactly one week ago at Crypto.com Arena. Jake DeBrusk notched his first career hat trick in that victory.
Monday’s clash marks the final leg of a four-game road trip for the Kings that began last Wednesday in wake of their lopsided loss to the Bruins. LA has gone 1-2 so far on the trip, dropping its first game to the Dallas Stars before bouncing back with wins over the Columbus Blue Jackets and Buffalo Sabres.
Boston’s only loss during its own road trip came last Tuesday in Anaheim, when Trevor Zegras scored a power-play goal with 21.6 seconds remaining to lift the Ducks past the Bruins 4-3. The Bruins beat the Seattle Kraken, San Jose Sharks, Vegas Golden Knights and Blue Jackets in addition to the Kings during their time away from TD Garden.
All in all, the Black and Gold have been red-hot since the New Year. And they’ll look to keep the good times rolling this week with home matchups against the Kings, Chicago Blackhawks and Arizona Coyotes.
Linus Ullmark will start between the pipes for Boston on Monday night. Jeremy Swayman more or less has become the Bruins’ No. 1 goaltender thanks to his stellar play, but he’ll receive some well-deserved rest before likely returning to the cage Thursday night against Chicago.
Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy indicated Monday that defenseman Matt Grzelcyk (upper-body injury) is a game-time decision against the Kings and that Jack Ahcan will sub into the lineup if necessary.
The Bruins flip-flopped Trent Frederic and Nick Foligno on Saturday night in Columbus, but the plan is for the former to return to the third line alongside Charlie Coyle and Craig Smith while the former bumps back down to the fourth line with Tomas Nosek and Curtis Lazar.
For the Kings, both Viktor Arvidsson and Brendan Lemieux are dealing with lower-body injuries. It’s unclear whether either will be available Monday, as both are considered day-to-day.
Kings head coach Todd McLellan is with the team in Boston after missing the last six games while in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocols.
Here are the projected lines and defensive pairings for Bruins vs. Kings:
BOSTON BRUINS (34-18-4)
Brad Marchand — Patrice Bergeron — Jake DeBrusk
Taylor Hall — Erik Haula — David Pastrnak
Trent Frederic — Charlie Coyle — Craig Smith
Nick Foligno — Tomas Nosek — Curtis Lazar
Mike Reilly — Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk/Jack Ahcan — Brandon Carlo
Derek Forbort — Connor Clifton
LOS ANGELES KINGS (31-19-7)
Jaret Anderson-Dolan — Anze Kopitar — Adrian Kempe
Trevor Moore — Phillip Danault — Viktor Arvidsson
Alex Iafallo — Quinton Byfield — Dustin Brown
Andres Athanasiou — Blake Lizotte — Arthur Kaliyev
Mikey Anderson — Drew Doughty
Olli Maatta — Matt Roy
Tobias Bjornfot — Sean Durzi
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