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Sharks at Bruins preview

Khudobin to start in goal for Boston with Rask cleared; Thornton of San Jose eyes 20th place on NHL all-time scoring list

by Matt Kalman / NHL.com Correspondent

SHARKS (4-4-0) at BRUINS (3-3-1)

7 p.m. ET; SN360, NESN, NBCSCA, NHL.TV

 

The Game

Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask has been cleared medically to play but Anton Khudobin will start for the third straight game, against the San Jose Sharks at TD Garden on Thursday.

Khudobin, 2-0-1 with a 2.97 goals-against average and .910 save percentage this season, started the past two games when Rask was out because of a concussion.

Rask, who will be the backup, has practiced every day since Tuesday, but coach Bruce Cassidy said the training staff, coaching staff and Rask decided it would be better for him to practice again before playing. Their next game is at home against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

The Sharks will look to build off their 4-1 win at the New York Rangers on Monday. They are 2-1-0 during their five-game road trip. They had to kill six Rangers power plays in New York.

 

Players to watch

Sharks center Joe Thornton, selected by the Bruins with the No. 1 pick of the 1997 NHL Draft, has five points (one goal, four assists) during a four-game point streak. He is one point from tying Jari Kurri (1,398) for 20th on the NHL all-time list.

Bruins rookie Charlie McAvoy has five assists during a four-game point streak, and has seven points (one goal, six assists) in seven games this season to rank third in the NHL among first-year defensemen.

 

They said it

"It's great. They're great players and I'll just try to bring something to that line and work hard both ways and be strong on the puck." -- Sharks forward Joonas Donskoi on playing on a line with Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski

 

"It gives me a couple of extra days of work and I figure I'm going to prepare like I'm playing tonight just to kind of get into the normal routine again. And then practice [Friday] and be ready for Saturday." -- Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask

 

Sharks projected lineup

Joonas Donskoi -- Joe Thornton -- Joe Pavelski

Melker Karlsson -- Logan Couture -- Tomas Hertl

Mikkel Boedker -- Chris Tierney -- Kevin Labanc

Timo Meier -- Ryan Carpenter -- Joel Ward

Joakim Ryan -- Brent Burns

Marc-Edouard Vlasic -- Justin Braun

Brenden Dillon -- Tim Heed

Martin Jones

Aaron Dell

Scratched: Barclay Goodrow, Jannik Hansen, Dylan DeMelo

Injured: Paul Martin (ankle)

 

Bruins projected lineup

Brad Marchand -- Patrice Bergeron -- Anders Bjork

Jake DeBrusk -- David Backes -- David Pastrnak

Kenny Agostino -- Riley Nash -- Frank Vatrano

Tim Schaller -- Sean Kuraly -- Danton Heinen

Zdeno Chara -- Brandon Carlo

Torey Krug -- Charlie McAvoy

Paul Postma -- Kevan Miller

Anton Khudobin

Tuukka Rask

Scratched: Matt Beleskey

Injured: David Krejci (upper body), Adam McQuaid (leg), Ryan Spooner (groin), Noel Acciari (hand)

 

Status report

Meier is back in the lineup after he was a healthy scratch at the Rangers on Monday. ... Heinen, called up from Providence of the American Hockey League on Thursday, will replace Beleskey in the lineup.

 

Stat pack

Thornton is three points from 1,400 in his NHL career. ... Marchand is two goals from 200 in the NHL. Backes is two points shy of 500 in the NHL.

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