Bruins stick with new-look lineup for Game 4

699146.jpg

Bruins stick with new-look lineup for Game 4

WASHINGTON, DC There will be no changes for the Bruins as they enter the lions den of the Washington Capitals once more tonight with a chance to take a giant lead in a playoff series thats growing more contentious by the game.

Tim Thomas was the first goaltender off the ice per usual, and the Bruins will stick with the new-look lines that helped spark some offense against Washington in Game 3 Monday night.

Its more of what I liked about the individuals. Milan Lucic played great; he was solid with a physical game and he was skating better. He was just a better player. With the line changes some of those guys even Marchand were a little better, said Claude Julien. Hes got some areas that he wants to keep getting better at. With Seguin hes got a few shots, but I thought his battle was much better in Game 3 than he had in the first two games.

So everybody improved and well keep going with that.

The Bruins also did some quick power play work while going 0-for-11 in the first three games of the series in a Stanley Cup 0-fer tradition that finished with a happy ending during last years playoff run.

Here are the projected lines for tonights Game 3:

Lucic-Bergeron-Peverley
Marchand-Krejci-Seguin
Rolston-Kelly-Pouliot
Paille-Campbell-Thornton

Chara-Seidenberg
Ference-Boychuk
Zanon-Corvo

Thomas
Khudobin

Raiders creep past Patriots in race for top seed in AFC

Raiders creep past Patriots in race for top seed in AFC

The Patriots and Raiders and neck-and-neck as the race for home field in the AFC turns for home. And, with four games left, the Raiders are ahead by a nose. The tiebreakers between the 10-2 teams in play currently? Common games followed by strength of victory. 

The first tiebreaker – conference record – is a deadlock as both teams are 7-1 in the AFC (the Brady-less Patriots lost to the Bills back in Week 4.

After conference record, it's the teams record in common games. 

PATRIOTS 26, RAMS 10

So far in common games with the Texans and Bills, the Patriots have gone 2-1 and the Raiders have gone 2-0. The Patriots play the Ravens next week. Oakland beat them. The Patriots play Denver after that. Oakland beat them as well but have one more game against Denver in Week 17.

So if it comes down to common games the Patriots really need to win these next two games.

Or hope the Raiders stub their toe a time or two in their final four games which are at the Chiefs, Chargers and Broncos with a home game against Indy in Week 16.

As for strength of victory, that too goes to Oakland at this point. The Raiders’ strength of victory is at .471. The Patriots’ is at .370.

But the tiebreaker that kicks in after conference record and before strength of victory – common games – is very much unresolved.The remaining picture as it stands right now? The Ravens are the No. 3 seed with a 7-5 record that leads the AFC North. The Texans’ 6-6 record is good enough to lead the AFC South. The 9-3 Chiefs are the top Wild Card. The 8-4 Broncos are the No. 6 seed.

The Patriots play the Ravens and Broncos over the next two weeks. Currently, the Dolphins (7-5) and Steelers (7-5) are on the outside looking in.

The Titans (6-6) will have a chance to get even with the Texans in Week 17 in head-to-head matchups but they host Denver and play at Kansas City the next two weeks so they have obstacles to clear before they get there.