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B's Look to Return to Form vs. Isles

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins -- Nobody in the Bruins locker room was satisfied with how Boston's game looked against Columbus.

But tonight, with the Islanders starting the evening in the same position in the Eastern Conference as the Blue Jackets occupied in the West, Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien saw no reason to remind his club not to take New York lightly.

"Not really because I think it’s pretty obvious after last game that there is no reason to overlook teams like that," said Julien. "They’re coming off a win. They’re obviously feeling good about themselves right now and I don’t see any reason for us to take these games lightly.

"I think our team has matured enough to know better."

Despite Thursday's would-be setback, Julien reminded reporters that there are plenty of good things in the Bruins gameplan.

"We’ve started playing much better," said the B's head coach. "Our whole game has just improved from start to finish. Our break-outs, our defensive game — guys coming back —- and we’ve played with the puck a lot more and we’ve also made some better offensive plays and have been able to finish off a little better than we did in the first month of the season.

"It was a struggle and it just seemed to eventually turn the corner and mentally we’re a much sharper team than we were last month."

The last time the B's played the Islanders, New York fell victim to an offensive attack that dropped five goals or more on opponents in five consecutive games.

Right wing Tyler Seguin has been a major part of that offensive explosion in November, but hasn't found twine in two games.

"Sometimes it’s not going to go in," said Seguin. "It’s just how the game is; how the game works.

"My thing out there is I still wanted to stay good defensively and I thought our line [has done] a good job. There weren’t too many goals in the last few games — if any — against us, so that’s just as big of a thing."

As a team, the Bruins haven't allowed more than three goals since Montreal scored four on October 29  (i.e. Boston's last loss).

Defenseman Dennis Seidenberg doesn't sound like he is willing to contemplate a return to last month's form.

"I think we got our wake-up call last game," said Seidenberg. "We all know we didn’t play the way we wanted to and we just got kind of sloppy entering the zones and just turning pucks over.

"For us, I think we all know that we have to be better than last game and get back to [Bruins] hockey."

Thinking about his club's 6-2 win over New York on November 7 Julien added, "We came out in the third and we certainly didn’t sit back and played to win.

"The one thing I did notice is our execution in that game was much better," added Julien. "Our breakouts were clean, we were moving the puck a lot crisper than we had previously — tape to tape.

"I thought in that game our confidence and our execution got better as the game went on.

"That was without a doubt a turning point for out team to get better."
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