The Penguins get another crack at the Boston Bruins this afternoon, a 12:30 eastern start on NBC. It’ll be the third and final meeting of the season between the two teams and Pittsburgh will be looking to avoid the season sweep at the hands of Boston. The Pens just dropped a 4-1 contest on Thursday in Boston. The B’s have been off since then, Pittsburgh had to jump over and play in Detroit on Friday night, a 2-1 overtime win.
Marchand searching for hands
It’s been a tough week for Boston’s Brad Marchand (couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy, eh). First he over-skated a puck in the shootout, completely wiping out a chance to score. He had a couple of bumbles in the game against the Pens too, leading to a funny tweet and this writeup on bruins.com:
Brad Marchand has just three goals over his last 24 games, but he isn’t panicking and is hoping that the empty-netter he potted - off a selfless feed from David Pastrnak - against Pittsburgh on Thursday night can help be a spark. Marchand has 21 goals in 49 games this season.
”It just hasn’t gone in. That stuff happens,” said Marchand, who poked fun at himself on Twitter on Friday after losing the handle on a shootout attempt and a breakaway this week. “There was a stretch there where I was having some bad games and the puck was still finding the back of the net. It all even itself out.
”It’s been a while since I’ve had a stretch like this, but it happens, happens to everybody. Just gonna play through it. There’s a lot of other areas in the game that you can focus on and still play well with.
”It’s nice to get one and up the confidence a little bit, but it’s gonna come. I play with too good of players, get too many good opportunities. It’s just a matter of time.”
Marchand’s struggles haven’t affected the rest of his super-stacked line, as witnessed on Thursday with David Pastrnak’s two point game, including a great pass to Patrice Bergeron who ripped in a goal on a nice shot.
Boston (based on Saturday practice)
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - David Pastrnak
Jake DeBrusk - Charlie Coyle - Anders Bjork
Danton Heinen - Par Lindholm - Karson Kuhlman
Joakim Nordstrom - Sean Kuraly - Chris Wagner
Zdeno Chara / Charlie McAvoy
Torey Krug / Brandon Carlo
Matt Grzelcyk / John Moore
Scratches: Anton Blidh, Steven Kampfer, David Krejci (injured)
Injured Reserve: Tuukka Rask, Connor Clifton, Kevan Millar
Pittsburgh (based on Friday game)
Jared McCann - Sidney Crosby - Dominik Simon
Dominik Kahun - Evgeni Malkin - Bryan Rust
Alex Galchenyuk - Andrew Agozzino - Patric Hornqvist
Zach Aston-Reese - Teddy Blueger - Brandon Tanev
Jack Johnson/ Kris Letang
Marcus Pettersson / John Marino
Juuso Riikola / Chad Ruhwedel
Expected scratches: Kevin Czuczman (healthy), Sam Lafferty (healthy)
Injured Reserve: Nick Bjugstad (core muscle surgery), Brian Dumoulin (ankle surgery), Jake Guentzel (shoulder), Justin Schultz (lower body injury)
Update: Mike Sullivan has announced that Matt Murray will start in goal today.