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Bruins at Lightning preview

Boston tries for first win in five games; Tampa Bay looks to get on track at home

by Corey Long / Independent Correspondent

BRUINS (20-6-6) at LIGHTNING (15-11-3)



The Game

The Boston Bruins will try to end a four-game winless streak when they play the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena on Thursday.

Boston is on the second half of a back-to-back set following a 3-2 loss to the Washington Capitals on Wednesday. They have been outscored 16-8 in their past four games (0-3-1).

Tampa Bay, which defeated the Florida Panthers 2-1 on Tuesday, is seeking to win consecutive games for the first time since winning three straight from Nov. 21-25.

The Lightning, who begin a four-game homestand, are 1-4-0 in their past five games at Amalie Arena. 


Players to watch

Bruins forward Brad Marchand has three assists in his past two games.

Lightning captain Steven Stamkos has seven points (four goals, three assists) in his past five games.


They said it

"That middle group [David Krejci's line] needs to push themselves a little bit…We expect [Krejci] to drive that line. (Anders) Bjork is playing hard, working hard, we expect Danton (Heinen) to get inside a little more. Charlie (Coyle) to get inside a little more. A little more puck possession. Harder to play against with the puck. Attack mentality." -- Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy on production from the second and third lines

"They're obviously one the best lines in the League. We've got to do our best to slow them down, but they are going to get opportunities. It's up to us to eliminate them as much as we can and force them to play on their end." -- Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman on Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak


Bruins projected lineup

Brad Marchand -- Patrice Bergeron -- David Pastrnak

Jake DeBrusk -- David Krejci -- Brett Ritchie

Anders Bjork -- Charlie Coyle -- Danton Heinen

Joakim Nordstrom -- Sean Kuraly -- Chris Wagner

Zdeno Chara -- Charlie McAvoy

Torey Krug -- Brandon Carlo

Matt Grzelcyk -- John Moore

Tuukka Rask

Jaroslav Halak

Injured: Karson Kuhlman (fractured tibia)

Scratched: Par Lindholm, David Backes, Connor Clifton


Lightning projected lineup

Ondrej Palat -- Brayden Point -- Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn -- Anthony Cirelli -- Steven Stamkos

Pat Maroon -- Cedric Paquette -- Yanni Gourde

Carter Verhaeghe -- Mitchell Stephens -- Mathieu Joseph

Victor Hedman -- Jan Rutta

Ryan McDonagh -- Erik Cernak

Mikhail Sergachev -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Curtis McElhinney

Injured: Tyler Johnson (lower body), Braydon Coburn (lower body)

Scratched: Luke Schenn


Status report

Cassidy said that Moore was going to skate this morning and if he was able to play he would draw in for Clifton. … Lightning head coach Jon Cooper said Johnson will not be available through the weekend. … Coburn did some light skating on his own Thursday.


Stat pack

DeBrusk needs one point for 100 in the NHL. … Kucherov needs two goals for 200 in the NHL. …Pastrnak has 10 points (six goals, four assists) in his past nine games. … Killorn has eight points (four goals, four assists) in his past five games.

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