Detroit Red Wings at Boston Bruins
When: 1:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 15, 2020
Where: TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
BOSTON – The Boston Bruins own the league’s top point total — barely — and have suffered an NHL-low 11 defeats in regulation, but two of those losses have come against the worst team in hockey. The Bruins have won seven of their last eight and will look to avenge their lone setback in that span when they host the Detroit Red Wings this afternoon.
Boston, which has seen its lead atop the Atlantic Division sliced to one point over red-hot Tampa Bay, has allowed more than two goals only once during the 7-1-0 tear — a 3-1 loss in Detroit on Sunday. “We obviously recognize (the dwindling lead) because we have the standings in the locker room and we can see the teams climbing up, but overall we can’t focus on anybody’s game besides our own,” defenseman Brandon Carlo said. “We’re just going to continue on our path.”
The Red Wings have 50 fewer points than the Bruins and have dropped 12 of their last 14 overall (2-11-1) but they own a five-game winning streak in the series. “We went through a stretch where we couldn’t beat them for a long, long time and then we’ve kind of found ways to win games here,” coach Jeff Blashill said of the success against Boston. “I don’t really know that answer but I know we better be ready to play tomorrow.”
TIME: 1 p.m. ET. TV: NHL Network, NESN, FS Detroit, Sportsnet
ABOUT THE RED WINGS (14-41-4): Blashill put his players through a rigorous practice Friday after saying his team “just stopped playing” in Thursday’s 4-1 loss at New Jersey, yielding four goals in a four-minute span of the third period. Brendan Perlini, who took a skate to the face that required stitches to his nose and under his eye Monday, joined the team at practice Friday wearing a face shield. “It’s just a lot of bruising around the eye and to be honest, my nose is still a little bit numb … but yeah, feeling quite decent,” Perlini said.
ABOUT THE BRUINS (35-11-12): David Pastrnak joined some lofty company in Wednesday’s 4-1 victory over Montreal, becoming the first Boston player with four hat tricks in a season since Hall of Famers Phil Esposito and Bobby Orr in 1974-75. Pastrnak also eclipsed last season’s career-high goal total of 38 and tied Toronto’s Auston Matthews for the league lead with 41, including 25 tallies in 31 home games. He has one assist versus Detroit this season after collecting three goals and an assist in four meetings in 2018-19.
- Bruins G Tuukka Rask has allowed five goals in two losses to Detroit this season but he is 13-0-6 at home.
- Red Wings G Jonathan Bernier has stopped 65 of 68 shots in winning both decisions versus Boston this season.
- The Bruins signed D Jeremy Lauzon to a two-year, $1.7 million contract on Friday.
PREDICTION: Bruins 4, Red Wings 1