BOSTON - The Bruins' play on Saturday night at TD Garden against the Montreal Canadiens may not have warranted a win, but it also didn't necessarily merit a loss.
Playing with injuries up front to David Krejci, Brad Marchand and Chris Kelly, in addition the well-documented injuries on the back end, the Black and Gold worked hard. They didn't head into their second game of a back-to-back against the heated rival who's had their number already this season ready to fold.
In the end, the Canadiens took the 2-0 win and handed the Bruins their first loss in four games.
It wasn't a pretty game, but it also wasn't as ugly as Head Coach Claude Julien would have liked, around the front of the net.
"If there’s something we’re going to critique here it’s probably the fact that we didn’t put enough pucks on net and get some net-front presence," Julien told reporters postgame. "We tried in the third to rectify that and did a little bit better, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough and the goaltender was standing tall for them."
"We’re not scoring goals easily these days, so we’ve really got to get our noses dirty in front of the net and throw some pucks in areas where we can jump on those loose pucks."
The Bruins outshot Montreal 33-23, and had another 31 attempts that missed the mark or were blocked, and it takes plenty of bodies and jam around the net to beat Carey Price.
BostonBruins.com - Brad Marchand skated in Thursday's practice at TD Garden, but was not expected to travel with the team to Columbus later in the afternoon.
"He skated but I don’t think we’re going to bring him on the trip," Head Coach Claude Julien told reporters following practice. "We’re going to give him some more time. But he felt much better, so he’s doing better. Day-to-day."
Marchand has been deemed "day-to-day" since last Saturday's game (November 15) against Carolina, in which he didn't finish out the third period. Thursday marked his first lengthy skate of the week. He missed practices on Monday and Wednesday, and only took part in Tuesday's morning skate for a few minutes before leaving the ice and not suiting up against St. Louis. His situation is undisclosed.
Dougie Hamilton was also back at practice after missing Wednesday's skate with the flu.
Defenseman Zach Trotman joined the group after being recalled from Providence Thursday morning, in light of Wednesday's news that Adam McQuaid is out six to eight weeks with a broken thumb suffered against St. Louis on Tuesday night.
BostonBruins.com - The new ProShop powered by Reebok at TD Garden will officially open this Saturday, November 22 at 10:00 a.m. prior to the Bruins-Canadiens game. The ProShop serves as the official team store of the Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics.
On Thursday morning, Bruins Principal Charlie Jacobs was on hand for the ceremonial ribbon cutting, along with Bruins President Cam Neely, Boston Celtics Team President Rich Gotham and Reebok General Manager of the Sports Licensed Division John Warren.
"I am so happy to have this done, and I expect our fans will really enjoy this new experience," Jacobs said. "This ProShop is roughly twice the size of our old footprint down in North Station, and it should be a great experience for our event-goers, whether it's Celtics, Bruins or a concert."
Following practice, Head Coach Claude Julien said that Hamilton missed the skate due to the flu, while Brad Marchand remains day-to-day.
Marchand did not play in Tuesday night's 2-0 shutout of St. Louis. Earlier on Tuesday, he had joined in the team's pregame skate briefly before leaving.
The winger's situation is undisclosed, though Julien has confirmed that it's not a head injury. Marchand also missed Monday's practice, and did not play in the second half of the third period in Saturday's game against Carolina for precautionary reasons.
The rest of the lines remained the same as Tuesday's game, with David Krejci in the mix. The center made his return to game action against the Blues after missing four games with an undisclosed injury.
BOSTON - The Bruins were prepared for a grind heading into Tuesday night's matchup against the St. Louis Blues, who came in winners of four straight and 10 of their past 11 games.
Both teams forecheck hard. Both teams play heavy along the boards. Both teams roll four lines. Both teams are backed by solid goaltending.
"They play hard. They don't give you much," Reilly Smith said pregame, teeing up the battle. "Probably won't be one of the prettiest matchups this year, but it's definitely going to be an important one, and we need those two points."
Through 60 minutes, the Black and Gold fought their way to a 2-0 win over one of the top teams in the Western Conference at TD Garden.
The Blues pulled goaltender Brian Elliott with more than three minutes left in regulation, but Rask and the Bruins stood firm.
BOSTON - Defenseman Adam McQuaid left Tuesday night's game against the St. Louis Blues in the second period, and did not return.
Bruins Head Coach Claude did not yet have an update on McQuaid following the game, and did not know the severity of the situation.
"I haven’t even – they just told me he wasn’t returning, and I don’t even bother asking at that point," Julien told reporters postgame from TD Garden, after the Bruins put up a 2-0 shutout of the Blues.
"I still have to see what it is, and even if I do go see, I don’t think I’ll get the total answer. [The trainers] have to have a look at him first and assess the whole thing."
McQuaid's final shift ended with 15:01 still left in the middle frame.
The Bruins had to finish out the game with five defensemen, and banded together for a solid defensive effort, backed by 33 saves from Tuukka Rask for his first shutout of the season.
BOSTON - Brad Marchand won't be in the lineup when the Bruins host the St. Louis Blues at TD Garden on Tuesday night.
Marchand took part in pregame skate on Tuesday morning, but left the ice early.
"[He's] not well, he went off the ice. He won't be going tonight," Head Coach Claude Julien said following the skate.
The winger didn't practice with the team on Monday at Ristuccia Arena. His last shift in Saturday's game against Carolina at TD Garden ended with 13:45 left in the third period.
The Bruins are being cautious with the undisclosed injury. Julien confirmed on Tuesday that it is not a head injury.
David Krejci is a possibility for Tuesday night's game. He took part in the pregame skate, skating in his usual spot with Milan Lucic and Seth Griffith. He's missed the past four games with a day-to-day, undisclosed injury.
WILMINGTON, Mass. - David Krejci practiced with the team on Monday at Ristuccia Arena for the first time since being out of the lineup with an undisclosed, day-to-day injury.
The center has missed the past four games, last suiting up on November 6 against the Edmonton Oilers.
He began skating on Friday with Strength and Conditioning Coach John Whitesides before practice.
"I haven't gotten anything from our medial staff yet that says he's cleared to go," Head Coach Claude Julien said following Monday's practice, when asked by a reporter if Krejci would be ready for Tuesday night's game against St. Louis. "So I can't answer that right now."
"He's been coming along and I think he's felt pretty good, from what I'm told," Julien said. "But they want to make sure that they make the right decision, so they haven't cleared him yet for me."
Krejci had missed two games prior to the game against Edmonton, dealing with the same day-to-day situation.
BostonBruins.com - Matt Bartkowski had been awaiting his chance to get back into the Bruins' lineup.
When he did get in, he knew he would be a more confident player.
"Yeah, I'll be myself," he anticipated. "Mentally, I'm where I need to be, whereas before, I was just lacking confidence."
After seven games as a healthy scratch, and the Black and Gold coming off back-to-back 6-1 and 5-1 road losses, he was awarded that chance on Saturday afternoon. The Bruins came away with a 2-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes at TD Garden.
"I think I did alright, for how much time I sat out," Bartkowski said after the win, and after 17 days between games. "I was moving, didn’t really give them too much, a few chances but other than that, it went pretty well."
BostonBruins.com - Tuukka Rask likes to get right back it after a tough loss.
Wednesday night in Toronto qualified as that, with the netminder being replaced by Niklas Svedberg at just 3:32 into the second period after the Bruins fell down 4-0 in an eventual 6-1 loss.
There wasn't much help in front of him, with the Bruins all agreeing that the only thing they did together as a team on Wednesday was play poorly.
He had entered the game with a 10-2-0 record against Toronto, along with a 1.59 goals-against average and .954 save percentage.
"It wasn’t my best night, it wasn’t the team’s best night, and we just have to live with that and move on," Rask told reporters in Toronto.
On Thursday night, he sat and watched from the backup seat at the Bell Centre as the Bruins were scorched again, this time 5-1, at the hands of the Canadiens.