Game Preview: Boston Bruins vs. Washington Capitals

Image result for boston bruins vs washington capitals(Photo Credits: AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

After losing two games that went into overtime and a shoot-out, the Bruins will be looking to finally break their 14-game losing streak against the Washington Capitals this afternoon. In a Super Bowl Sunday matinee, the B’s will be facing the Capitals on their home turf at the Capital One Arena. Noting some criticism towards defense, Coach Bruce Cassidy will be looking to make some lineup changes after the loss to the Flyers.

During the Flyers game, Danton Heinen had a wide open net with a chance to score. However, an unlucky bounce to the puck would befall the forward.

“I think after the last play the other night it does (affect his confidence),” said Cassidy. “Got the puck on your stick with basically an empty net, game-winning goal and it hops over. You start getting in your own head I think when that happens. That’s just tough luck there. He’s in the right spot, did everything right to win the puck and then to just – I suspect it would a little bit.

We have to try to help him through that.”

-Coach Cassidy

Image result for joakim nordstrom boston washington capitals(Photo Credits: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

Joakim Nordstom will play on the third line with Trent Frederic and David Backes to hopefully add some dimensional speed.  Matt Grzelcyk will be back in the lineup and be paired with Kevan Miller. Goaltender Tuukka Rask will get the start in net. Rask is currently fourth in the NHL with a goals against average of 2.45 and a 0.920 save percentage.  The Bruins are 1-2-3 in their last six games.

PROJECTED LINEUP:

Marchand – Bergeron – Pastrnak

Cehlarik – Krejci – DeBrusk

Nordstrom – Frederic – Backes

Kuraly – Acciari – Wagner

 

Chara – McAvoy

Krug – Carlo

Grzelcyk – Miller

Moore – Kampfer

Rask

Halak

Who is out: Moore, Heinen

 

WASHINGTON

The Capitals continue with their six-game homestead when they host the Bruins this afternoon. They are 1-5-2 in their last eight games and snapped a seven-game losing streak when they defeated the Calgary Flames 4-3 on Friday. Alex Ovechkin returns after a one-game suspension for skipping the All-Star game. He will also become the NHL’s all-time leader in points by a Russian-born player. Ovechkin is currently tied with Sergei Fedorov at 1,179 points.

Image result for washington capitals vs boston bruins(Photo Credits by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Washington’s last loss against the Black and Gold was on March 29th, 2014 with their recent game slump being their longest in over five years. With Ovechkin returning to the lineup, center Lars Eller may be out after sustaining a lower-body injury in the game against the Flames. He did not practice with the team yesterday and will be a game-time decision. Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals with 37 while his 57 points lead the team. Nicklas Backstrom has 52 points with John Carlson is third with 48 points. Expect Brayden Holtby in the net.

PROJECTED LINEUP

Alex Ovechkin — Nicklas Backstrom — T.J. Oshie

Jakub Vrana — Evgeny Kuznetsov — Tom Wilson

Dmitrij Jaskin — Travis Boyd — Brett Connolly

Andre Burakovsky — Nic Dowd — Devante Smith-Pelly

 

Dmitry Orlov — John Carlson

Michal Kempny — Matt Niskanen

Brooks Orpik — Jonas Siegenthaler

Braden Holtby

Pheonix Copley

 

Who is out: Chandler Stephenson, Madison Bowey

Injured: Christian Djoos (thigh), Lars Eller (lower body)

 

ONE MORE TO 1,000

Today’s game will mark the 999th NHL career game played by Patrice Bergeron, who has four career 30-goal seasons. Boston continues to rely on their top line as they have netted 65 of 147 goals scored this season so far. Right-winger David Pastrnak reached his third straight 30-goal season during the Flyers game. He currently leads the team in goals (30) and team points (61). Brad Marchand is also looking to reach his fourth straight 30-goal season.

The Bruins have been teetering between third and fourth in the Atlantic Division and have a 27-17-7 record as they battle for a spot in the Playoffs. The Capitals are third in the Metropolitan Divison with a 28-17-6 record with the Columbus Blue Jackets biting at their heels.

WHEN TO WATCH: Today with puck drop at 12:30pm

WHERE TO WATCH: NBC

Check out the available tickets from our advertising partner SeatGiant for your next Boston Bruins game. Click the link below, and when purchasing any event ticket — from the NHL, NBA, MLB, NFL to concerts and shows — please use discount code BNGP to save a little money. Thank You!

Click Here For 2018-19 Boston Bruins Regular Season Games and Ticket Info From SeatGiant.com

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