(Photo Credits: Jamie Sabau/NHLI via Getty Images)
By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88
The Bruins continue their road trip when they visit the Nationwide Arena as they face the Columbus Blue Jackets, who are looking to clinch a playoff berth with a win tonight. Meanwhile Boston can clinch second place in the Atlantic Division; they are four points ahead of Toronto. After tonight’s game, the B’s will have two more left in the regular season before facing the Maple Leafs in the first round of the Playoffs. Boston will hopefully bounce back tonight as they are 1-3 in their last four games.
Columbus have won five straight games and are looking to win their sixth tonight. Meanwhile, the Bruins are hoping to clinch home ice advantage if they win against the Jackets. It will be their third and final meeting with Columbus winning 7-4 in their first tilt and Boston winning 2-1 back at the Garden on March 16th. After dropping two in a row, the Bruins are hoping to bring their energy in the Arena in what hopes to be a hue Playoff atmosphere.
“It will be good for us. We need it. We’ve been two games where we were at our best, so hopefully they bring out the best in us. That’s the style they tend to play anyway, kind of a playoff, heavier style. Should be good for us”—Bruce Cassidy
(Photo Credits: USA Today – Russell LaBounty)
Coming back from a lower-body injury, expect Chris Wagner to be back in the lineup while Danton Heinen will sit out due to an illness. Sean Kuraly is still recovering from a fractured hand. If the Bruins win tonight and the Maple Leafs lose against the Carolina Hurricanes, Boston would have home ice. If Boston comes away with one point and the Leafs lose, the Bruins can still get home ice. Here were this morning’s rushes:
Brad Marchand was named NHL’s Third Star of the Month for March as he is two points away from a career high of 100 points. This month alone he has tallied 23 points with nine goals and 14 assists. He recently set a franchise mark for most shorthanded goals after scoring off a sick feed from linemate Patrice Bergeron in this past Sunday’s tilt against the Detroit Red Wings. Expect Tuukka Rask in net tonight. The Bruins are 47-23-9, while Columbus is 45-30-4. Marchand leads the team with 98 points and in assists (63). David Pastrnak leads the team with 36 goals.
(Photo Credits: Charles Krupa | AP)
The John Tortorella-lead team has surged lately, with the power trio of Matt Duchene, Artemi Panarin and Cam Atkinson. Panarin leads the team in points (83) and in assists (56). Columbus is in the wild-card with 94 points and could clinch a spot tonight with a win over the B’s. They are currently one point ahead of Carolina and two over the Montreal Canadiens. Expect goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky in net. The Jackets have outscored their opponents 24-4 in their last fie games.
Here are their projected lineups for tonight:
Artemi Panarin – Pierre-Luc Dubois – Cam Atkinson
Ryan Dzingel – Matt Duchene – Josh Anderson
Boone Jenner – Alexander Wennberg – Oliver Bjorkstrand
Riley Nash – Brandon Dubinsky – Nick Foligno
Zach Werenski – Seth Jones
Markus Nutivaara – David Savard
Dean Kukan – Scott Harrington
WHEN TO WATCH: Tonight with puck drop at 7:00pm
WHERE TO WATCH: NBCSN, NESN