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First Things First...

Marchand is excited for the playoffs, but said the B's have to focus on Buffalo first

Friday, 04.6.2012 / 3:09 PM ET / Features
By Anthony Gulizia  - BostonBruins.com
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First Things First...
BOSTON, MA – The playoffs are nearly here and the Bruins are eager to meet their first round opponent – whether it is the Ottawa Senators or the Washington Capitals.

But before that takes place, Game 82 against the Buffalo Sabres will be played Saturday at TD Garden and Brad Marchand doesn’t plan on over-looking their Northeast Division rivals.

“We’re very excited to get underway, but we have a big game tomorrow that we can’t look past,” Marchand said. “It’s a big test for us – to make sure we’re prepared for playoffs and make sure we finish the season on a good note.”

Essentially, the Sabres are playing simply for the W, and pride, too. Buffalo (39-32-10) is out of playoff contention, and their season will conclude at the final horn Saturday.

Nonetheless, Marchand said he doesn’t think the Sabres will just throw in the proverbial towel.

“It’s definitely dangerous when you play a team like that,” the B’s gritty forward said. “They have nothing to lose, and basically they’re just trying to be a spoiler.

“They usually end up playing a very strong game, they want to finish on a good note and end the season well. We have to be prepared to counter that and come prepared to play.”

In the final regular season game, some concern has been raised about players getting injured after defenseman Johnny Boychuk was hurt in Tuesday’s game against Pittsburgh.

But forward Brian Rolston did as little as bat an eye at the thought of someone getting injured.

“Well obviously, that’s always going to be a concern – it is what it is,” Rolston said. “If things happen, things happen. We have tremendous depth here, so you don’t foresee that and you hope it’s not going to happen.”

As for Marchand, who said he expects a physical game, the prospect of Buffalo targeting Bruins players was quickly dismissed.

“I think they’re going to play strong and physical – they always do,” Marchand said. “They always play pretty hard against us, but you know with regards to taking runs at guys and cheap shots, I don’t think they’ll play that kind of game.  It should be just a strong, physical game.”

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STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
2 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
3 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
4 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
5 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
6 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
7 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
8 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
P. Bergeron 81 23 32 2 55
L. Eriksson 81 22 25 1 47
M. Lucic 81 18 26 13 44
C. Soderberg 82 13 31 10 44
B. Marchand 77 24 18 5 42
D. Hamilton 72 10 32 -3 42
R. Smith 81 13 27 7 40
T. Krug 78 12 27 13 39
D. Krejci 47 7 24 7 31
C. Kelly 80 7 21 6 28
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
T. Rask 34 21 13 .922 2.30
N. Svedberg 7 5 1 .918 2.33
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