Here’s your Boston Hockey Now Boston Bruins Game Day Preview:
Boston Bruins (12-2-0, 24 pts) vs Buffalo Sabres (7-7-0, 14 pts)
TIME: 7 P.M. ET,
TV: NESN, ESPN+
Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub
The Boston Bruins continue to pile up points in the season’s first few months and now simply want to see how long they can ride out this hot streak. The B’s are second behind the Vegas Golden Knights with 24 points on the season and lead the NHL with a plus-25 goal differential this season while setting the tone in pretty much all categories across the board.
They’re certainly not going to thumb their chests or feel like they’ve accomplished any kind of goal at this point, or made any kind of statement to the rest of the league when the 2022-23 NHL regular season is barely a month old.
“I don’t know if we’ve made a statement here. It’s a little bit of a [Bill] Belichick answer, but it means we’re in first place and the reason why is because of how hard they play for each other in that room,” said Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery.
It’s that kind of mindset paying attention to the process and ignoring the big picture distractions that’s served the Black and Gold well in the early going and will be helpful in a Saturday night game against the Sabres in Buffalo where they could easily otherwise overlook their opponent. Instead, one would expect the eye is going to be on the prize and finishing up strong headed into the Thanksgiving holiday in a couple of weeks.
In the meantime, the Boston Bruins will roll with the same lineup that took a 3-1 win over the Flames on Thursday night and thrust veteran netminder Keith Kinkaid into his debut with the Black and Gold after being in Boston the last couple of weeks.
Boston Bruins Notes
–Keith Kinkaid will be making his Boston Bruins debut on Saturday in the front end of the back-to-back weekend games against the Sabres and Vancouver Canucks. The longtime NHL veteran was 2-1-1 with a .922 save percentage and a 2.70 goals against average this season in Providence prior to being called up due to the Jeremy Swayman knee injury.
—Charlie McAvoy will continue to play for the Boston Bruins this weekend after returning from his shoulder surgery rehab for Thursday night’s win against the Flames. The young defenseman had missed the first 13 games of the season while rehabbing from offseason shoulder surgery. McAvoy clocked in at under 20 minutes of ice time against the Flames and Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery indicated he would play both ends of the back-to-back.
“He played well (Thursday night) and he feels really good, so that’s why he’s on the [road] trip,” said Montgomery. “We expect him to play tonight and tomorrow night.”
-Boston Bruins defenseman Mike Reilly successfully cleared waivers on Thursday and headed to Providence this weekend. The veteran defenseman has yet to suit up and play for the P-Bruins and the word out of there is that he’s hoping for a trade given his current situation.
-Defenseman Derek Forbort had surgery on his middle finger and is out four to six weeks, and goalie Jeremy Swayman is week-to-week with a lower-body injury that appeared to be a knee issue when he got hurt.
-Craig Anderson is expected to be in net tonight for the Buffalo Sabres as they take on the Black and Gold. Anderson is 3-1-0 with a .927 save percentage and a 2.25 goals against average this season and has outplayed goaltending partner Eric Comrie to this point in the season.
-Kyle Okposo is going to be out for the Buffalo Sabres with general soreness after not being available for practice on Friday. Jack Quinn will be back in the lineup for the Sabres after sitting out Thursday’s game vs. Vegas.
-The Buffalo Sabres are in the middle of a four game homestand, but have lost four games in a row headed into tonight’s game at the First Niagara Center.
Boston Bruins Lineup:
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Jake DeBrusk
Taylor Hall-David Krejci-David Pastrnak
Nick Foligno-Charlie Coyle-Pavel Zacha
Trent Frederic-Tomas Nosek-Craig Smith
Matt Grzelcyk-Charlie McAvoy
Hampus Lindholm-Connor Clifton
Jakub Zboril-Brandon Carlo
Buffalo Sabres Lineup:
Jeff Skinner-Tage Thompson-Alex Tuch
Peyton Krebs-Casey Mittelstadt-Victor Olofsson
Jack Quinn-Dylan Cozens-JJ Peterka
Zemgus Girgensons-Rasmus Asplund-Vinnie Hinostroza
Owen Power-Rasmus Dahlin
Jacob Bryson-Casey Fitzgerald
Lawrence Pilut-Ilya Lyubushkin’