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Penguins at Bruins preview

Pittsburgh aims for fifth straight win; Krejci likely out for Boston

by Matt Kalman / Independent Correspondent

PENGUINS (29-12-5) at BRUINS (27-9-12)



The Game 

The Pittsburgh Penguins will look to tie their season high with their fifth straight win when they play the Boston Bruins at TD Garden on Thursday.

Evgeni Malkin will try to stretch his point streak to five games for Pittsburgh, which won five straight from Oct. 10-18. Malkin has eight points (four goals, four assists) in his past four games for the Penguins, 8-1-1 in their past 10 games and 15-3-1 in their past 19.

Bruins forward David Krejci is not expected to play because of an upper-body injury.

Goalie Jaroslav Halak will start for the Bruins; Tuukka Rask was placed on injured reserve Thursday with a concussion.

Boston, shut out 3-0 by the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday, has seven wins in its past 20 games (7-6-7).


Players to watch

Penguins center Sidney Crosby had four points (one goal, three assists) Tuesday in a 7-3 win against the Minnesota Wild in his return after missing 28 games because of core muscle surgery. He has 21 points (six goals, 15 assists) in 18 games this season.

Bruins forward David Pastrnak has 20 points (10 goals, 10 assists) in his past 15 games and leads the NHL with 36 goals in 48 games.

They said it

"They're deep, they've got a balanced attack, they've got a good solid defense corps, they've got solid goaltending, they've got one of the best power plays in the league. I think those are all the reasons why they're one of the top teams in the league. We're just going to have to continue to try to focus on our game and bring our best game and try to dictate the terms out there as best we can." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan

"We don't expect anything different from them than what we've seen in the past. It's a team that competes hard but also has high-end talent and you need to be on your toes every time you're on the ice and you need to make sure you come to play, otherwise you're going to look silly." -- Bruins center Patrice Bergeron


Penguins projected lineup

Jared McCann -- Sidney Crosby -- Dominik Simon

Dominik Kahun -- Evgeni Malkin -- Bryan Rust

Alex Galchenyuk -- Andrew Agozzino -- Patric Hornqvist

Zach Aston-Reese -- Teddy Blueger -- Brandon Tanev

Jack Johnson -- Kris Letang

Marcus Pettersson -- John Marino

Juuso Riikola -- Chad Ruhwedel

Tristan Jarry

Matt Murray

Scratched: Kevin Czuczman, Sam Lafferty

Injured: Nick Bjugstad (core muscle surgery), Brian Dumoulin (ankle surgery), Justin Schultz (lower body), Jake Guentzel (shoulder surgery)

Bruins projected lineup

Brad Marchand -- Patrice Bergeron -- David Pastrnak

Jake DeBrusk -- Charlie Coyle -- Anders Bjork

Danton Heinen -- Par Lindholm -- Karson Kuhlman

Joakim Nordstrom -- Sean Kuraly -- Chris Wagner

Zdeno Chara -- Charlie McAvoy

Torey Krug -- Brandon Carlo

John Moore -- Matt Grzelcyk

Jaroslav Halak

Dan Vladar

Scratched: David Backes, Steven Kampfer

Injured: Kevan Miller (knee), Tuukka Rask (concussion), Connor Clifton (upper body), David Krejci (upper body)


Status report

The Penguins did not hold a morning skate. … Kuhlman was called up from Providence of the American Hockey League on Thursday to replace forward Brett Ritchie, who was placed on waivers Tuesday.


Stat pack

Rust has 15 points (six goals, nine assists) in his past 10 games and has a four-game point streak (two goals, four assists). … DeBrusk has seven points (three goals, four assists) in his past five games.

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