The Boston Bruins (3-1-1, 7 pts) open up a two-game set against the Pittsburgh Penguins (4-2-0, 8 pts) tonight at TD Garden at 7 PM ET (NESN, ATTSN-PT, SN360, TVAS).
The Bruins have won back-to-back games for the first time this season after sweeping a back-to-back against the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday, with a 5-4 shootout win, and then Saturday, with a 6-1 rout of the ‘Broad Street Bullies’. Now the B’s host the Flyers’ Keystone State rival, the Penguins, who come into town riding a four-game win streak.
Tristan Jarry is expected to get the nod between the pipes for the visitors and Tuukka Rask should be back in for the Bruins after Jaro Halak got the win on Saturday night with 16 saves.
For the Penguins side of this two-game set tonight and Thursday, be sure to follow our man Dan Kingerski from Pittsburgh Hockey Now.
– Brad Marchand has two goals and an assist Saturday. Marchand is tied for the team lead in goals with Patrice Bergeron with the two linemates lighting the lamp three times thus far. Marchand leads the team in assists with four helpers and points with seven.
– The third line of Nick Ritchie-Charlie Coyle-Craig Smith has been arguably the Bruins’ best line through five games. Ritchie has a goal and two assists in his last two games and two goals and three assists overall. Coyle has scored in two straight games and added an assist on Saturday. The newcomer, Smith, got his first goal with the Bruins Saturday and also had a helper, his second of the season.
– After failing to score at even strength in their first three games, the Boston Bruins now have three 5-on-5 goals in each of their last two games.
– The Bruins went 3-for-4 on the powerplay Saturday and are now 6-for-17 on the man advantage. The B’s have only allowed two powerplay goals on 20 man advantages so far.
– Defenseman Matt Grzelcyk (lower-body) will be a game-time decision after not playing on Saturday. Bruins superstar winger and reigning co-Rocket Richard winner David Pastrnak (hip) remains on long-term injury reserve but skated with full contact at practice Monday. Cassidy and Pastrnak both acknowledged there is a possibility Pasternak makes his 2021 season debut on Saturday against former Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara and the Washington Capitals. Bruins defenseman John Moore (lower-body) is day-to-day and forward Ondrej Kase (upper-body) will not play against the Penguins and is out indefinitely.
– Speculation that Pittsburgh Penguins captain and future hall of famer Sidney Crosby was headed for a decline this season has proven to be wrong thus far. Crosby had two helpers in a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers on Sunday and leads the team in goals (3), assists (4), and points with seven.
– After not registering a point in the season opener, forward Bryan Rust now has a five-game point streak going with a goal in each of his last two games and three straight games with an assist before that.
– Like the Bruins, the Pittsburgh Penguins are 6-for-17 on the powerplay this season. The peans have killed off 18 of 21 powerplays this season.
– With Penguins forward Evan Rodrigues (lower-body) questionable, Sam Lafferty and Drew O’Connor jumped up from the taxi squad at practice Monday and according to Kingerski, could draw into the lineup on Tuesday and/or Thursday. Defenseman Kevin Czuczman, another taxi squad member, also joined practice Monday. Rodrigues, forward Zach Aston-Reese (shoulder) and defensemen Mike Matheson and Juuso Riikola (both upper-body) are all out indefinitely. Defensemen Zach Trotman (knee) and Marcus Pettersson (upper body) are week-to-week and forward Sam Miletic is on the ‘unfit to play’ list.
Boston Bruins Lines
Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – Jake DeBrusk
Nick Ritchie – David Krejci – Jack Studnicka
Anders Bjork – Charlie Coyle – Craig Smith
Trent Frederic – Sean Kuraly – Chris Wagner
Jeremy Lauzon – Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk/Connor Clifton – Brandon Carlo
Jakub Zboril – Kevan Miller
Pittsburgh Penguins Lines
Jake Guentzel-Sidney Crosby-Bryan Rust
Jason Zucker-Evgeni Malkin-Kasperi Kapanen
Jared McCann-Teddy Blueger-Brandon Tanev
Drew O’Connor-Mark Jankowski-Colton Sceviour/Sam Lafferty
Brian Dumoulin-Kris Letang
John Marino-Cody Ceci
P.O. Joseph-Chad Ruhwedel