Peverley out, Rask in vs. Islanders

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Peverley out, Rask in vs. Islanders

BOSTON -- The Bruins will get a bit of a different look tonight against the New York Islanders, and theyll also get another chance to lift Tuukka Rask out of the winless morass in which hes been in three different instances already this season. Claude Julien confirmed that Rask will get the start, looking to improve on his 0-3-0 record and 2.71 goals against average, and that his hockey club has played like a bunch of lollygaggers in those three Rask outings.

Some would point to Rasks below-his-standard .906 save percentage to start the season, but thats also better than Carey Price, Roberto Luongo, Ilya Bryzgalov and Jonas Hiller, among others, to start this season.

"Its unfortunate his record doesnt indicate the way hes played. For the most part weve failed in front of him and everybody knows it," said Julien. "There are games where we havent given him much help and havent played well in front of him either. Hes got an opportunity to win his first game tonight, and its up to all of us Rask included to continue playing the way we have lately."

Rich Peverley will miss tonights game with a "minor undisclosed injury" that has caused him to miss practices, and suit up for a Saturday night performance against the Maple Leafs that included a pitch-perfect pass to Tyler Seguin for a power play goal in the first period.
"He needs a few more days," said Julien. "You saw he played in the last game, but its not getting any better. So were going to give him a few more days."

Peverleys absence means that Benoit Pouliot should be back in the lineup after missing the last three games with an illness followed by some strong performances from Jordan Caron that kept him on the sidelines.

Here are the expected lines for tonights game:

Forwards
MarchandBergeronSeguin
LucicKrejciHorton
PouliotKellyCaron
PailleCampbellThornton

Defensemen
CharaBoychuk
CorvoSeidenberg
FerenceMcQuaid

Goaltenders
Rask
Thomas

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

BOSTON – The Bruins didn’t show anything on the ice in Monday afternoon’s 4-0 matinee loss, and that’s not really any kind of an overstatement.

The scoring chances were almost nonexistent despite 32 shots on net, the second period was dreadful as the Bruins gave up three goals over the course of a six minute span and there was zero added urgency in the third period once the B’s fell behind. The emotion was missing from the drop of the puck to open the game and it never showed up once the Islanders began taking control of the game.

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It was a bitterly disappointing result after the Black and Gold had played so well in their previous five games, and put in strong, winning efforts against the Panthers, Blues and Flyers.

On Monday afternoon, the passes were sloppy and errant all over the ice, there was zero physicality and the Bruins buckled once the Isles turned the intensity up just a little bit in the second period. The game was basically over once Nikolay Kulemin snapped one home wide open from the slot area with Torey Krug, Adam McQuaid and David Krejci all blowing their defensive assignments, and then Tuukka Rask followed it up by allowing a softie to Josh Bailey from a bad angle close to net.  

So Bruins head coach Claude Julien termed it a “flat” performance once it was all over with, and openly wondered whether it was fatigue-related result linked to the compacted schedule Boston has played through this season. Monday marked the seventh straight day that the Bruins held some kind of formal skate, though most of the veteran B's players stayed off the ice during last week's Wednesday off-day practice in Nashville.   

“We were flat tonight, obviously, flat from the get-go. I think that first half of the game, we didn’t give much until they scored that first goal. We were able to stay in, but we certainly weren’t generating much ourselves, from that point of view,” said Claude Julien. “His is really the first year, for me as well, going through a condensed schedule, and I’m certainly not using that as an excuse, is it fatigue?. . . But we were flat tonight. How do you explain it? I don’t know. I know that it’s frustrating. I know that it’s disappointing. That’s all I can say.

“Whether it’s mental fatigue, whatever it is. We made some mistakes tonight like, from the goals you look at, we weren’t even in the position that we’re normally in. So we were totally out of whack, as far as even defending. When you give that first goal that much room in the middle of the ice, your D’s go on the wrong side, your weak-side forward is way on the other side, and you open up the slot area, that’s something I haven’t seen much of this year. I think it said a lot from our game tonight.”

The compacted schedule certainly could be a factor for a Bruins team that’s played more games than anybody else in the Eastern Conference to this point, but the B’s also had 48 hours to recharge after winning a Saturday matinee over the Flyers. So the fatigue excuse seems a little far-fetched for a hockey club that’s no-showed a few too many times this season, and did it again on Monday afternoon against one of the worst teams in the NHL.