COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Bruins will be aiming to close out their second-round series with the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night as it shifts back to Nationwide Arena for Game 6.
Boston holds a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven showdown and can advance to the Eastern Conference Final for the first time since 2013 with a victory. Despite the opportunity in front of them, however, the Bruins are not looking too far ahead.
"We'll worry about Round 3 if that's something that we're fortunate to go to do," said David Backes. "We're worried about 60 minutes tonight, a team that's played hard, a lot of one-goal, back-and-forth type of games. I think we're cheating ourselves if we look past that. Worry about the 60 minutes tonight."
After trailing their first-round series with the Maple Leafs heading into Game 6, the Bruins know exactly the kind of desperation that Columbus will be playing with on Monday night and are hoping to use that experience to their advantage.
"We've been on the other side of it. I know how it feels when you're down. Your season is on the line," said Charlie McAvoy. "I guess we can use that in here, knowing what it feels like to try and combat that. This is a massive game for us. This is an opportunity for us to take a step forward into where we want to go ultimately.
"We have a chance these guys' season, so you've got to have that killer instinct and we've got to be ready to go tonight. And we will be."
Video: Cassidy speaks ahead of Game 6
With the Blue Jackets expected to come out with a vengeance, Backes believes the key to victory for the Bruins will be countering that intensity, as opposed to trying to weather the storm.
"They're at home, they're gonna have their crowd behind them. They play hard physical hockey in their building especially," said Backes. "If we sit there for too long and say they're gonna come out flying and worry about that then we're gonna be behind the eight ball.
"If we think we can establish our game, get in their zone, probably the best way to slow them down and just stop them from occupying our zone. That's the mindset from the get-go. If we're there for the start of the game it's a dead heat with these two teams."
Video: DeBrusk speaks before Game 6
Acciari Still Out
Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said that Noel Acciari (day-to-day) will miss his second straight game as he battles with an upper-body injury. Chris Wagner will remain in the lineup as the fourth-liner right wing.
Cassidy also confirmed that defenseman Kevan Miller is out for the series.
Monday's Projected Lineup
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - David Pastrnak
Jake DeBrusk - David Krejci - David Backes
Marcus Johansson - Charlie Coyle - Danton Heinen
Joakim Nordstrom - Sean Kuraly - Chris Wagner
Zdeno Chara - Charlie McAvoy
Torey Krug - Brandon Carlo
Matt Grzelcyk - Connor Clifton
Scratches: Noel Acciari, Trent Frederic, Steven Kampfer, Karson Kuhlman, Zane McIntyre, and John Moore.