(SportsNetwork.com) – The Boston Bruins will aim for their third win in four
games when they welcome Joe Thornton and the San Jose Sharks for Tuesday’s
battle at TD Garden.
The Bruins began the season with an 1-3-0 mark, but the reigning Presidents’
Trophy winners responded by going 2-1-0 on a three-game road trip.
Boston won by more than one goal for the first time this season its last time
out, slamming the Buffalo Sabres by a 4-0 count on Saturday. Niklas Svedberg
stopped all 32 shots he faced and four different Bruins scored en route to the
lopsided win over the lowly Sabres.
It was the first career shutout for Svedberg, who improved to 2-1-0 in his NHL
Dougie Hamilton, Zdeno Chara, Torey Krug and Carl Soderberg provided offense
for the Bruins, who were coming off Thursday’s 6-4 setback in Montreal.
“We always build our offense from our strong defense,” said Chara. “That was
the key for tonight.”
Tuukka Rask could be back between the pipes tonight. The Bruins No. 1
goaltender is 2-0 with a 0.50 goals against average in two career games
against San Jose.
Kevan Miller will miss tonight’s game with a dislocated shoulder suffered
Saturday in a fight with Buffalo’s Nicolas Deslauriers. The Bruins defenseman
has no points in six games this season and was averaging 14 minutes, 35 second
of ice time per game. Matt Bartkowski expects to take Miller’s spot in the
lineup tonight. As of yet, there is no timetable for Miller’s return.
While Boston tries to improve its record after a slow start, the Sharks are in
the opposite situation. San Jose opened the season 3-0 before dropping two of
its next three contests, including a shutout loss in its last trip to the ice.
The Sharks fell to 2-1-1 on a five-game road trip after dropping a 4-0
decision Sunday against the New York Rangers. San Jose fired 33 shots on net,
but were unable to get one past Henrik Lundqvist.
Alex Stalock allowed all four scores on 29 shots for the Sharks, who went 0-
for-3 on the power play.
“We didn’t work hard enough,” Sharks head coach Todd McLellan said. “We didn’t
compete in areas we need to compete in.”
Antti Niemi expects to start in net tonight and the Finnish backstop boasts a
5-2-0 record and a 1.70 GAA in seven career tilts against Boston.
Tonight’s test marks Thornton’s 10th meeting against his former team. Boston
selected “Jumbo Joe” first overall at the 1997 draft before dealing him to the
Sharks during the 2005-06 season. He has compiled two goals and three assists
in nine games versus the B’s.
Boston has won the last two encounters against the Sharks, but the clubs each
have four wins over the past eight meetings. San Jose had won four in a row on
the road in this series before the Bruins recorded a 2-1 victory at TD Garden
on Oct. 24 of last season.