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Liles and Chara Out, as Bruins Get Set for Flyers

by Caryn Switaj @NHLBruins / BostonBruins.com

PHILADELPHIA - Defensemen Zdeno Chara and John-Michael Liles will not be in the lineup, as the Bruins get set to face off against the Flyers in Philadelphia on Tuesday night.

 

Game time is set for 7:30 p.m. ET (NESN, 98.5 The Sports Hub). 

 

Liles did not travel with the team. He left during the first period of Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden with an upper-body injury, after crashing into the boards. 

 

Head Coach Claude Julien thought that he may have taken a knee to the head. A further update on Liles was expected to come later on Tuesday.

In addition to Liles being out, Chara remains sidelined by a lower-body injury. He suffered the injury on Nov. 22 against St. Louis. He will miss his fourth straight game on Tuesday night. 

 

It is not an easy task for the Bruins to play without their two most veteran defensemen.

 

For two periods on Sunday afternoon against the Lightning, they proved they could handle it. Julien was pleased with the defense corps coming together and saw his blueliners playing a big role in Sunday's 4-1 win. 

 

"I think our guys answered the challenge really well last game, and we're going to need that to happen again," Julien said. "And there's nothing we can do except ask those guys to play extremely well and step up their game as best as they can."

 

Kevan Miller helped fill in the void on Sunday, logging 26:42 in ice time, a 10-minute jump from the 16:50 he logged in his first two games this seasons. He's played in three straight games after missing the first 19 game of the season following hand surgery. 

 

"Some guys took on bigger minutes than they're used to, and it wasn't any crazy efforts out there - it was just guys being themselves and playing within themselves," said Torey Krug. "And when you do that, you work hard and you don't have time to think about it in between shifts."

 

Based on the morning line rushes, Miller will start the night on the left side (his off side), with Brandon Carlo on the right. 

 

"I think for him to step into the left side, and do the job - and he said he had no issues with that, he said he played there before at school and played a little bit for us last year on the left side - so it was great he was able to step up and play the amount of minutes he did and play as well as he did," said Julien. 

 

"So, guys that play well that like deserve to get ice time and deserve to be on the ice. We're all here with the same goal, it's to win hockey games, and put your best players on the ice."

 

Morrow Slotting In

 

Joe Morrow will slot back into the lineup after being a healthy scratch on Sunday and join Colin Miller on a pairing.

 

Morrow had played six straight games before sitting out against Tampa Bay. 

 

"Well, when he gets in, he's done a good job," said Julien. "He's a guy that he can skate, he's a guy that can move the puck well, especially that part of it, where in our own end, he'll pick up that puck, skate it right out and not let us spend too much time in our own end, so he's been good."  

 

I"'d say being back in the lineup, I'm just trying to look to bring some intensity," said Morrow. "And focus on the job that I have to do, and filling a void that we don't necessarily have anymore with those two veteran guys out, so I'm just going to try to bring a consistent, 60-minute effort that will try and make a difference out there and just play a hard 60 minutes of good, intense hockey."

 

Keeping Offense Going

 

The Bruins' offense came through with a four-goal effort on Sunday that included Jimmy Hayes breaking a scoring drought, David Pastrnak netting his 13th of the season and Dominic Moore notching his sixth of the season. 

 

"I thought we competed well, I thought we got in, protected pucks, and I think we battled to win puck back, I think that always helps," said Moore. "One of the biggest things is just support and it starts in our own end - if we can come out together, we've got a better chance of going into their end together."

 

Schaller Moves Up

 

Tim Schaller again looks to be skating on David Krejci's left wing, based on the morning line rushes. He logged a season-high 16:10 in ice time on Sunday playing with Krejci and David Backes.  

 

"Well, he's played well enough to get there, and we've been looking for somebody that's going to give us a little bit of consistency on that left side," said Julien. "Spoons has been in and out, Beleskey's been in and out. Some nights, those lines have no scoring chances, so as a coach, you do what you've got to do and move guys around. I need more offense out of that line, so you try and found those guys, and right now that's what we've got."

 

Standings Battle

 

The Bruins (12-10-0) and Flyers (10-10-3) are both battling to get into a playoff spot in the East. Boston sits above Philadelphia by just one point with 24 points through 22 games. Heading into Tuesday's action, Columbus (26 points) and New Jersey (25 points) owned the two Wild Card spots. 

 

Pregame Skate Lines and Defense Pairings 11/29

 

Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - David Pastrnak

Tim Schaller - David Krejci - David Backes

Matt Beleskey - Riley Nash - Austin Czarnik

Ryan Spooner - Dominic Moore - Jimmy Hayes 

 

Kevan Miller - Brandon Carlo

Torey Krug - Adam McQuaid

Joe Morrow - Colin Miller

 

Projected Starter: Tuukka Rask // Backup: Anton Khudobin  

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