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Game Day: Oilers vs. Bruins

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
12:48 p.m.

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12:39 p.m.
The Bruins lines...

12:28 p.m.

Yesterday, Claude Julien said that he hoped the Bruins would "get on a roll" during their upcoming busy stretch.

However, it will take the a combined effort from the players and coaching staff to ensure that the B's make their way over .500.

"Some of it is confidence," said Julien. "It’s a number of things and how you get to better at that is you work on it in practice and make sure those guys get better at it and you hope that it almost becomes second nature."

One of the players who, according to the head coach, could use a confidence boost is Blake Wheeler.

"I think his confidence is coming back and all we’ve been doing is encouraging him and showing him those situations that he has to get better in," said the coach. "He wants to [produce], he cares, and his will is there.

"Last year his confidence took a beating and I think he came back here this year determined and when it didn’t happen right away his confidence took another beating.

"So this is where sometimes as a coaching staff you’ve got to step in there and work with him and help him get through it," said Julien.

Vladimir Sobotka is one player whose confidence has grown since he was switched to the center position. Julien says it's with good reason, too.

"He’s more comfortable," said Julien. "He’s played there most of his career.

"At this level, guys are obviously bigger and stronger than in the American League.

"So for him to battle along the boards all night long might not be the best scenario for him. At center he probably has a little bit more space and it still allows him to play gritty, but he doesn’t have to battle along the boards all night long," he said.

The Bruins defense corps continues to improve as Zdeno Chara and the B's blueliners continue to work toward last year's level of success.

"We’ve had other guys like Derek Morris [be a] pretty good defenseman for us this year," said Julien. "Dennis [Wideman] is on his game and [Andrew] Ference is finally finding his game. [Matt] Hunwick as well, so we feel we’ve got a D that we can maybe spread out a little bit more.

"But I think as we move on here you’ll see Zee [Zdeno Chara] find his groove. You’ll probably see his minutes go up as well."

11:31 a.m.

By now, the Bruins should all be in the locker room getting ready for this afternoon's game.
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