Boston Bruins at Columbus Blue Jackets
When: 7:00 PM ET, Tuesday, January 14, 2020
Where: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
COLUMBUS – The Atlantic Division-leading Boston Bruins will try to bounce back from a bizarre shootout loss when they visit the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday. Boston’s Brad Marchand was trying to extend the shootout to a sixth round but overskated the puck at the center red dot and when he barely made contact to move it about one inch, the game was over and the Bruins had to settle for earning a point for the 13th time in their last 14 games (7-1-6).
Rookie goaltender Elvis Merzlikins is doing his best to keep Columbus playoff-relevant as he recorded his first career shutout in Saturday’s 3-0 victory at Vegas. Merzlikins is 5-2-0 with a 1.88 goals-against average and .943 save percentage in seven starts since No. 1 Joonas Korpisalo sustained a torn meniscus Dec. 29.
“I thought we played really good as a team,” Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella told the media Sunday. “And when we had breakdowns, Elvis was strong.” Pierre-Luc Dubois’ overtime goal gave Columbus a 2-1 victory at Boston on Jan. 2 in the first meeting since the Bruins eliminated the Blue Jackets from the 2019 playoffs in six games.
TIME: 7 p.m. ET. TV: NESN, FS Ohio, Sportsnet 360, Sportsnet East
ABOUT THE BRUINS (27-8-12): Tuukka Rask, who posted a .948 save percentage in the 2019 conference semifinals against Columbus, is expected in goal Tuesday after Jaroslav Halak made 34 saves Monday, including a sharp right-pad save on Ivan Provorov in the final seconds of overtime. Jake DeBrusk and Danton Heinen each had two assists against Philadelphia with DeBrusk recording three goals and four helpers during a four-game point streak and Heinen registering five points during that span. David Pastrnak scored his NHL-leading 36th goal Monday and has seven in six January games, and leads the team with 66 points.
ABOUT THE BLUE JACKETS (22-16-8): The club has gone 7-2-2 without Cam Atkinson, who is on the verge of returning from an ankle injury he sustained Dec. 19. Dubois scored versus Vegas and shares the team lead in goals with defenseman Zach Werenski (15) while boasting a club-most 34 points. Kevin Stenlund recorded his first two career assists Saturday in his 18th career game after scoring his first three goals in his first 11 of 14 contests this season.
- Boston’s fourth-best power-play unit has succeeded in a club-record 14 straight games (16-for-50).
- Rask announced Monday that he would not participate in the All-Star Game, which carries a one-game suspension. Rask will miss the Vegas game Dec. 21 or won’t play at Winnipeg on Jan. 31, which is the first of a back-to-back.
- Boston leads the league in overtime and shootout losses (12) with Columbus second (eight).