It’s been a little over a week since the Boston Bruins last met the Washington Capitals and lost 4-3 in overtime after completely surrendering a three-goal lead. But things are a little different now heading into this meetup: specifically, this is a matinee game, which has–somewhat unusually–been one of Boston’s strengths this season. They’ve actually won every single game that started in the afternoon, so today presents a chance to keep that pattern going.
Because the Bruins aren’t playing at home tomorrow for St. Patrick’s Day, which seems practically sacrilegious, they’ll also wear the special green warmup jerseys and then auction them off for charity.
Washington doesn’t exactly look like a playoff contending team this year, but their most recent game saw them stage a comeback and win 3-2, so they are rather good at being the comeback kids. So the Bruins will need to ensure that they establish a lead–and then keep it.
Team-leading goal-scorer Brad Marchand scored in the last game between these two, as did two defensemen, Zdeno Chara and Dougie Hamilton. That makes Marchand’s career line against Washington four goals and four assists in 11 games, while his linemate Tyler Seguin has two goals and an assist in nine games and Patrice Bergeron has six goals and 21 assists in 27 games, a point-per-game performance.
Daniel Paille of the Merlot line, which was very helpful in the Bruins’ most recent game, said that the players held meetings about accountability and holding leads.
Tuukka Rask‘s career record against the Caps is nothing to write home about: 0-2-2, a 3.61 goals-against average and an .868 save percentage. Anton Khudobin hasn’t faced Washington before, though his home record is 2-0-0, 2.00 and .918. Considering that this is half one of a back-to-back, the two games may most likely see two different goaltenders in net. As for Washington, Michal Neuvirth recently got back from being out of the lineup, so maybe Braden Holtby won’t be there again.
The game starts at 1 p.m. on NESN.