The Boston Bruins (5-4-0, 10 pts) welcome the Ottawa Senators (3-7-1, 7 pts) to TD Garden Tuesday night for the first of four meetings this season between the Atlantic Division foes. Puck drop is at 7:05 PM ET (NESN, TSN, RDS).
The schedule is finally picking up for the Boston Bruins and so is the divisional slate as this will be the fourth straight divisional foe the B’s will face. The Senators may be coming into this game missing four regulars thanks to a COVID outbreak but after a dismal and discombobulated effort in a 5-2 loss to the Maple Leafs in Toronto this past Saturday, the Bruins can’t take anything for granted. In fact, after an offseason full of roster turnover, ten games into this 2021-22 regular season, the Boston Bruins still seem to be searching for an identity.
“We’ve got to create our identity where we’re hard to play against for 60 minutes, not 20, 30, or 40, whatever it is,” Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy said following the loss Saturday. “Got to be 60 and we weren’t. You get into their type of game, don’t want to say trading chances, but a little more transition. For us, I think we’ve got to play a little bit more puck possession in the O-zone, harder to play against in our end.
“Some easy goals for them tonight that they worked for, don’t get me wrong. But I think we were soft on pucks when we needed to be harder. If you score five or six goals, those don’t matter as much. But we didn’t.”
Betting Line, Picks, Prediction:
The Boston Bruins are -300 favorites over the depleted Senators who trail the Bruins by three points in the Atlantic Division standings. You can play them on the puck line (-1.5) at -120 for better value. However, with both teams coming in with suspect defense and inconsistent goaltending, the over/under at 6 may be the play here. Give us a 5-3 Bruins win and the OVER 6 (+105) and that’s where we think your best value is if you take the under.
Prediction: Bruins 5 Senators 3
Boston Bruins Notes
-Boston Bruins rookie goalie Jeremy Swayman will be back between the pipes for the Bruins. Swayman comes into this tilt with the Sens at 2-2-0 with a 2.28 GAA and a .900 save percentage.
– Is Pasta about to boil over into a hot streak? Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak snapped a four-game goalless streak with a goal Saturday night against the Leafs and Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy thinks his best sniper is about to snap out of his early funk with just three goals and three assists in nine games.
“He has a difficult summer for personal reasons so I don’t think he was as dialed in as other years with his training, but he comes into training camp and he’s still with ‘Bergy’ and ‘March’ and I think he’s had a bit of tough luck,” Cassidy told TSN 1200 Tuesday morning. “He’s been off-net, he’s hit some posts, some pucks that he usually scores on. So, the chances are there. …he’s lacked some shooting mentality on 2-on-1’s when he’s looked to make plays; it’s hard to be tough on those guys when they’re that successful in the league but he can have a little bit more of a shot mentality so the puck does go in for him but other than that, he’ll come around. He’s on a good line and I think it’s just a matter of time before it starts clicking for him.”
-Bruins rookie forward Jack Studnicka will draw back into the lineup for the first time since October 28. Studnicka will ride the right wing on the third line with Jake DeBrusk on the left and Erik Haula centering them.
-Boston Bruins winger Nick Foligno (upper-body), won’t play Tuesday night but he’s shooting to return to the lineup Thursday against the Edmonton Oilers at TD Garden.
Ottawa Senators Notes
– Senators goalie Anton Forsberg was manning the starter’s net at the game-day skate Tuesday morning and is the likely starter. Forsberg is 0-3-0 with a 3.10 GAA and a .891 save percentage.
– Forward Drake Batherson leads the Sens in assists with seven helpers and in points with 12. Forward Josh Norris leads the team in goals with six lamplighters.
– After missing the first three games of the season due to a contract stalemate, new Senators captain and former BU star Brady Tkachuk has three goals and two assists in eight games.
Boston Bruins Lines
Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – David Pastrnak
Taylor Hall – Charlie Coyle – Craig Smith
Jake DeBrusk – Erik Haula – Jack Studnicka
Trent Frederic – Tomáš Nosek – Curtis Lazar
Derek Forbort – Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk – Brandon Carlo
Mike Reilly – Connor Clifton
Ottawa Senators Lines
Brady Tkachuk – Josh Norris – Zach Sanford
Tim Stützle – Nick Paul – Drake Batherson
Alex Formenton – Chris Tierney – Tyler Ennis
Parker Kelly – Logan Shaw – Egor Sokolov
Thomas Chabot – Nikita Zaitsev
Erik Brannstrom – Artem Zub
Michael Del Zotto – Josh Brown