So how will the B’s prepare for a team they haven’t seen in over a year? A lot of film, according to forward Chris Kelly.
“I think that’s where video comes into play, especially with teams you don’t see on a regular basis,” Kelly said. “I think we’ll have a good video session [today] and see some of their plays – some of their things they do consistently and hopefully that will help.”
The last time the two teams played, the Bruins emerged with a 3-0 after losing 5-2 the day prior.
The B’s are an entirely different team since then, and if they want to continue on their 20-2-1 tear, they need to stick to the basics and focus on their own game, defenseman Adam McQuaid said.
“You got to know how they play, but more so worry about ourselves and make sure we’re ready to continue to do the things that have made us fairly successful lately,” McQuaid said. “So maybe not worry so much about what they’re going to bring as much as we are.”
After the holiday break, the B’s left for Phoenix yesterday morning, and shortly after the team landed, they hit the ice at Jobing.com arena for practice.
“I think had we practiced at home this morning, it would have been a bit of a waste,” Head Coach Claude Julien said. “Then we jump on a plane for six hours, and certainly when you’ve been up in the air for that long, it’s probably better to practice afterwards.
“So we thought it was better to leave early, practice here and get a good early skate and it would have benefited us a lot more.”
Much like before the game against the Florida Panthers, Julien stressed the importance of coming out sharp against the Coyotes aggressive defense.
Forward Patrice Bergeron agreed with his coach and said that he expects Phoenix to give the Bruins a battle.
“You look at their line up, they’re obviously a strong team,” he said. “They have some great defensemen that can move the puck and score some points. They’re really aggressive as far as I can see, and they have a lot of skills – I think it’s a well-balanced team.
"It’s going to be hard for us – especially in their building. And like I said before the season, I think all the teams are going to be ready for us – we’re defending champs.”
--- Anthony Gulizia