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Need to Know: Bruins at Blue Jackets

Boston looking to bounce back as it closes out three-game trip in Columbus

by Eric Russo @erusso22 / BostonBruins.com

COLUMBUS, Ohio - After a disappointing finish on Monday night in Philadelphia, the Bruins are aiming to rebound as they close out a three-game road trip and cap a back-to-back with a tilt against the Blue Jackets on Tuesday at Nationwide Arena.

The Bruins were far from pleased with their effort against the Flyers, as they let a three-goal lead slip away in what turned into a 6-5 shootout loss to snap a three-game winning streak.

"Hopefully we go as hard as we can for 60 [minutes] like we didn't do last night. I think that's what we missed last night. We stopped for a little bit and gave them a chance to get back in the game," said Patrice Bergeron.

"Even if it's a back to back, I don't think we should overthink it. Go out there and play and try to be at your best. For us, being at our best is really being North-South and being on our toes and being hard, winning puck battles and being stingy in our zone."

While they are at the end of a road trip that featured three games in four days, the Bruins believe there could be some advantage to getting right back to it, particularly when it comes to turning the page on a dispiriting defeat.

"There's some truth to that," said Torey Krug. "I find when we play a team on a back to back, their first period is usually pretty good. It's what happens after that, whether they're tired or not…for us, our mentality is to come in with the right approach and take care of the puck. That's a big part of it. Got to manage the game and be smart about that."

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said he hopes his team takes the loss to the Flyers personally, adding that, "Hopefully we're a little bit ornery that we let a point slip away last night."

Video: Bergeron talks closing back-to-back in Columbus

Grzelcyk Will Sit

Cassidy was not satisfied with the play of Matt Grzelcyk on Monday night, prompting him to insert Steven Kampfer into the lineup against the Blue Jackets. Grzelcyk played in Philadelphia despite leaving the previous game against the Islanders after taking a slash to the back of the left leg. Cassidy, however, said his decision to sit the blue liner is not injury related.

"No, he didn't play well enough, so the other guy's gonna go in," said Cassidy. "When he gets back in there, hopefully he's better."

Video: Cassidy talks was to improve versus Columbus

Opposing View 

The Bruins and Blue Jackets faced off just under two weeks ago, when Columbus skated away with a 2-1 overtime victory at TD Garden. Since then, the Blue Jackets have gone 3-2, including a 3-1 West Coast road trip that ended Saturday night with a 3-0 win in Las Vegas.

Overall, Columbus is 22-16-8 with 52 points, placing them 2 points behind Philadelphia for the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference.

"They play hard. They're obviously well-coached, well-structured," said Ohio native Sean Kuraly. "Up and down their lineup they play hard. I think ice will be at a premium out there. Sometimes that can bring out the best in this group. We're competitive and we like those games where we're in the trenches. Not to mention, there's also a lot of talent in there. Games like this can bring out the best in us."

The Blue Jackets, still battling a rash of injuries with nine players sidelined, are paced by a strong defense corps, including All-Star Seth Jones and fellow top pair blue liner Zach Werenski, who leads the Blue Jackets - along with Pierre-Luc Dubois - with 15 goals.

"They're definitely a very good team defensively," said Bergeron. "We saw that last year in the playoffs. I think it's their overall game and the way that they play, the system. But the defense group is young, fast, and very talented.

"Obviously the first two guys, but it goes beyond. [David] Savard is a very good player that plays hard, tough to play against and so on. Great team, tough to play against."

Video: Kuraly talks challenge of Blue Jackets

Tuesday's Projected Lineup

Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - David Pastrnak

Jake DeBrusk - David Krejci - Anders Bjork

Danton Heinen - Charlie Coyle - Brett Ritchie

Joakim Nordstrom - Sean Kuraly - Chris Wagner

 

Zdeno Chara - Charlie McAvoy

Torey Krug - Brandon Carlo

John Moore - Steven Kampfer

 

Tuukka Rask

Jaroslav Halak

 

Scratches: David Backes, Matt Grzelcyk, and Par Lindholm

Video: Bouncing back, Kampfer in for Grzelcyk

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