The Boston Bruins will try to eliminate the Washington Capitals with their third straight win of their first-round Stanley Cup Playoffs series in Game 5 tonight (7 PM ET, NESN, USA, SN1, TVAS2, NBCSWA) in Washington DC.
The Bruins know that they need to maintain the right mindset and keep growing if they wish to send the Caps golfing with a win tonight.
“The guys are elevating. The whole team is elevating. We’re trying to build something here and grow every game. We’re doing our due diligence off the ice as far as pre-scouts and getting ready to play and our mindset is to do whatever it takes to win,” said Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy after notching three assists in Game 4. “Winning is all that matters, so I’m just trying to pull the rope just like everything else. I think that’s what the whole team is doing. Now we shift to the next game and it’s going to be the hardest one to get [in the series].”
Tuukka Rask, now the winningest goalie in the regular season and the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Boston Bruins history, will get the nod again for the B’s. Rask is 31 with a 1.99 GAA and a .930 save percentage.
Ilya Samsonov will start his third straight game in the series for the Capitals. Samsonov is 0-2 with a 2.96 GAA and .913 save percentage.
–Defenseman Jarred Tinordi will replace the injured Kevan Miller (concussion) in the lineup for Game 5. This will be Tinordi’s first game of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Tinordi has been out with a broken nose since the final game of the regular season on May 11. Prior to that, he had been out of the lineup since April 18.
–Besides Tinordi and Vaakanainen, the Boston Bruins don’t have much defensive depth left to draw on if the Capitals extend the series to Game 6. Defenseman Jeremy Lauzon (right hand) will miss another game after blocking a shot in Game 1. Fellow rearguard Jacob Zboril (upper-body) is still out and Steven Kampfer (arm) and John Moore (hip) are out for the season.
–The Bruins’ powerplay is now 5-for-16 in the series after going 3-for-5 in Game 4. The Boston Bruins are scoring at a 31.3% clip on the powerplay in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
-After finishing second overall with an 86 % success rate, killing off 153 of 178 powerplay attempts against them in the regular season, and also posting a league-best nine shorthanded goals this season, the Bruins’ penalty kill is off to a solid start in the playoffs. The Bruins PK held the Caps to one goal on seven power-play attempts in Game 4 and has killed off 14 of 17 Washington power plays in the series. That’s good enough for an 82.2% success rate.
Washington Capitals Notes
-After losing the first game with a differential of more than one goal, the Washington Capitals know they need to get back to basics and execute.
“The execution I think was way off [Friday],” said Capitals head coach Peter LavioletteSaturday. “But we’ve got to move past it regardless. There’s no room for the weak in playoffs. You’ve got to respond to everything.”
– Goalie Vitek Vanecek (lower body) will miss a third straight game.
-The Capitals powerplay is 3-for-17 with a 17.6% success rate against the Boston Bruins in the series, which is down a few points from the regular season.
-The Capitals penalty kill has killed off 11 of the Bruins’ 16 powerplays in the series, giving them a 68.8 percent success rate in the series.
Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – David Pastrnak
Taylor Hall – David Krejci – Craig Smith
Nick Ritchie – Charlie Coyle – Jake DeBrusk
Sean Kuraly – Curtis Lazar – Chris Wagner
Matt Grzelcyk – Charlie McAvoy
Mike Reilly – Brandon Carlo
Jarred Tinordi – Connor Clifton
Alexander Ovechkin – Nicklas Backstrom – Anthony Mantha
Conor Sheary – Lars Eller – T.J Oshie
Daniel Sprong – Evgeny Kuznetsov – Tom Wilson
Carl Hagelin – Nic Dowd – Garnet Hathaway
Dmitri Orlov – John Carlson
Brendan Dillon – Nick Schultz
Zdeno Chara – Nick Jensen