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Jagr set to debut for Bruins against Devils

by Brian Hunter /

DEVILS (15-12-9) at BRUINS (23-8-4)


Last 10: New Jersey 3-3-4; Boston 5-4-1

Season series: Second of three meetings. Brad Marchand scored in the sixth round of a shootout as Boston won 2-1 at TD Garden on Jan. 29. Nathan Horton's goal with 4:55 left in regulation drew the Bruins even after David Clarkson had connected on a second-period power-play goal for the Devils.

Big story: It's expected that Jaromir Jagr will make his Bruins debut after being acquired from the Stars on Tuesday for Lane MacDermid, Cody Payne and a second-round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft. The 41-year-old Jagr is still performing at an elite level, recently recording his 1,000th career assist. He led Dallas with 14 goals and 26 points, and gives Boston another weapon up front after Jarome Iginla spurned them for Pittsburgh.

Team Scope:

Devils: Still without a win since Ilya Kovalchuk went out with a shoulder injury, New Jersey failed to pick up a point Monday against the Islanders following a road trip in which the Devils lost all three games post-regulation. The Devils spotted the Islanders a two-goal lead in the first 7:14 of the first period and spent the rest of the night trying to climb back in. Alexei Ponikarovsky scored midway through the second, but a power-play goal by John Tavares in the third doomed them to a 3-1 defeat.

"We've got to move forward," forward Patrik Elias told reporters on Tuesday. "We have tough games coming up, but they'll be fun to play in. We're going to play the Rangers a couple of times, the Flyers, Boston here twice, Toronto twice. So, it's not going to be easy, but they'll be fun games to play in and it's going to be a playoff mentality."

Bruins: Since a 2-4-1 stretch late in March temporarily derailed Boston's run at the Northeast Division crown, the Bruins have won two in a row. Jagr creates a buzz heading down the stretch, and his arrival could come at a particularly important time after Patrice Bergeron suffered a concussion in Tuesday's 3-2 win over the Senators. Bergeron's head made contact with Colin Greening's forearm or elbow while Greening was trying to shoot from the slot in the second period. The Bruins persevered, however, getting the winning goal from Horton with 9:39 left in the third.

"Obviously, going into the third he wasn’t in the lineup anymore," forward Tyler Seguin said of Bergeron. "I guess you could say we adjusted for that period. Obviously, we got a quick one. We found a way to win and that's what we wanted to do for him."

Who's hot: Horton has a goal in four consecutive games for the Bruins. David Krejci has back-to-back games with a goal and an assist. Anton Khudobin has started the past two games and given up just two goals on 73 shots.

Injury report: New Jersey coach Peter DeBoer said Tuesday that Kovalchuk wasn't close to returning, but is expected back before the regular season ends on April 27. Forward Tom Kostopoulos (head) left Monday's game after being knocked out in a fight with New York's Matt Martin and is day-to-day. … Bergeron is out indefinitely for Boston. Forward Chris Kelly (broken tibia) and defenseman Adam McQuaid (shoulder) are on injured reserve.

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