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Bruins vs Lightning Preview: JVR Out; Lineup Up In Air



Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins will have to dig deep into their depth tonight when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden for the first time this season.

Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery told the media that forward James van Riemsdyk will not play on Saturday night as he deals with an undisclosed injury.

“We’ve got a lot of balls in the air,” the Bruins bench boss told the media following a rare game-day skate at TD Garden on Saturday morning. I don’t have anything concrete for you.”


Bruins rookie center Matthew Poitras is available to draw into the lineup should Montgomery choose to use him and Montgomery said that Mason Lohrei is as well.

“He’s an option,” Montgomery said of Poitras. “Lohrei wasn’t here this morning; he’s an option. He’s in the dental chair right now. JVR is not an option; he’s day-to-day.”

Poitras, who returned from the 2024 World Junior Championship in Sweden on Wednesday and missed his team’s 6-5 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night, has not played for the Bruins since Dec. 16, when he had an assist in a 2-1 Bruins loss to the New York Rangers.

The Bruins also recalled forward Jesper Boqvist and assigned rookie forward Georgii Merkulov to Providence on Saturday.

Here’s your Boston Hockey Now Bruins Game Day Preview:

Boston Bruins (23-8-6, 52 pts) vs Tampa Bay Lightning (19-16-5, 43 pts)

Time: 7:08 p.m. ET

How to watch: NESN, BSSUN

Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub

Betting Lines:

Money Line: Bruins (-162), Lightning (+136)

Puck Line: Bruins -1.5 (+154), Penguins +1.5 (-185)

Over/Under: Over 6 (-120) Under 6 (+100)

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Bost0n Bruins Notes

David Pastrnak leads the Bruins in goals (23), assists (30), and points with 53 in 37 games.

-Goalie Linus Ullmark is expected to get the start between the pipes for the Bruins. Ullmark is 12-5-2 with a 2.75 GAA and a .918 save percentage.

-Forward James van Riemsdyk (undisclosed, day-to-day), defenseman Derek Forbort (lower-body, LTIR), and winger Milan Lucic (NHL/NHLPA Players Assistance Program) are out.

-Forward Matt Poitras and defenseman Mason Lohrei are game-time decisions.

Boston Bruins Lineup


Pavel Zacha-Morgan Geekie-David Pastrnak

Brad Marchand-Charlie Coyle-Jake DeBrusk

Danton Heinen-Matthew Poitras-Trent Frederic

Jakub Lauko-John Beecher-Oskar Steen/Jesper Boqvist

*Note: As mentioned above, the lineup is very much up in the air so this is just guess work.


Matt Grzelcyk-Charlie McAvoy

Hampus Lindholm-Brandon Carlo

Parker Wotherspoon/Mason Lohrei-Kevin Shattenkirk


Linus Ullmark

Jeremy Swayman

Tampa Bay Lightning Lineup


Brandon Hagel-Brayden Point-Nikita Kucherov

Nick Paul-Anthony Cirelli-Steven Stamkos

Michael Eyssimont-Tyler Motte-Conor Sheary

Tanner Jeannot-Luke Glendenning-Austin Watson


Victor Hedman-Nicklaus Perbix

Calvin de Hann-Darren Raddysh

Jack Thompson-Emil Martinsen-Lilleberg


Andrei Vasilevskiy

Jonas Johansson


Referees: Brandon Schrader, Chris Rooney

Linesmen: Scott Cherrey, Tommy Hughes


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