The Bruins are going to have a bit of a different look on Tuesday night, but they're still the Boston Bruins. They still want to win. Marty Turco will make his fourth start for the Bruins against the Pittsburgh Penguins, and it could very well be his final appearancewith the B's and with the NHL.
Fresh-faced collegiate rookie Torey Krug will also be playing in his first NHL game after signing an entry-level deal with the Bruins last week, and the B's are expected to hold some key players back from the road game in Ottawa on Thursday night as well.
"The one thing is we want to keep our intensity and we want to keep our game going in the right direction. There's no such thing as letting your guard down. I think right now, you don't want to get into bad habits. You have the opportunity to mix your lineup a little bit guys in and out and giving certain guys rest. But at the same time, whoever's playing you need them to be at their best. That's what we talked about", said Claude Julien. "The intensity's got to be there,the desire to win, the will to do what you have to do has to be thereand that can't take a break. We have the opportunity here to givecertain players as we move forward here well-deserved rest for a lotof those guys. We've had to overtax maybe certain players at some point because of injuries and certain situations. Right now we can hopefully give them a bit of a break."
The resting begins on Tuesday night against the Penguins, and will continue until the playoffs are expected to start April 12 at TD Garden against an opponent to be determined.
PLAYER MOST IN NEED OF A TIRE PUMP: Rich Peverley has no points, two shots on net and a plus-1 in his last three games after returning from injury, and looks like he's continuing to get his wind and legs back. Peverley had a long break when he sat out with a sprained right knee, so the shifty winger is one B's player that won't be getting much time off over the final three games. But it appears he could use it tostill get in touch with his game over the season's final nine days before the playoffs.
DRESSING ROOM MANTRA HEADED INTO THE GAME: "The last thing you want to do is coast through these last few games and think that all of a sudden playoffs are going to start -- and everything is going well. You can't just turn the switch on. You certainly don't plan on putting the switch off here and then turning it on the first game of the playoffs. We're a team, that for two months, struggled to get consistency and now we're starting to get it. We certainly don't want to let it go." Claude Julien on the fine line the Bruins must toe over the final three games.
KEY MATCH-UP: It's always about Zdeno Chara neutralizing Evgeni Malkin when the Bruins play the Penguins, but now he's got plenty of other weapons to worry about. James Neal bowled over the entire Bruins defense during the first period of Boston's loss in Pittsburgh at the beginning of the month and Sidney Crosby is back stirring the drink for the Penguins. This should be one final challenge for Chara before he gets a little deserved rest time for the rest of the regular season.
STAT TO WATCH: 7-1-1 the B's record in their last nine games, which they clearly hope to improve upon even if some of the substitutes are getting the starter's reps against the Penguins.
INJURIES: Nathan Horton (concussion) is out and doesn't appear close to returning at any point this season. Tuukka Rask (groinabdomen strain) is planning to take the ice at some point this week, and is hopeful he'll be ready by the playoffs. Adam McQuaid (left eye contusion) has healed nicely, but the Bruins are keeping him as a precaution. Jordan Caron has the flu. For the Penguins, defenseman Ben Lovejoy is out 3-4 weeks.
GOALTENDING MATCHUP: Marty Turco is getting his fourth start for theBruins and is riding a two-game winning streak after victories overthe Islanders and Ducks. Turco was also very effective in relief of Tim Thomas against the Penguins in his first appearance with the Bruins, and may be playing in the last game of his NHL career. Brent Johnson gets the start in place of Marc-Andre Fleury and has been solid against the Bruins throughout his career.