NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, December 12th
(All times Eastern)
Boston Bruins (21-8-2) at Edmonton Oilers (11-18-3), 9:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Boston Bruins take aim at a fourth consecutive
victory when they continue a four-game road trip with Thursday's battle
against the Edmonton Oilers at Rexall Place.
The Bruins picked up a third win in a row and improved to 2-0 on their current
swing with Tuesday's comeback win in Calgary. Boston scored a pair of goals
late in the third period to rally for a 2-1 win on the night Jarome Iginla
returned to the Saddledome.
Boston made Iginla's return to Calgary a triumphant one, as the club overcame
a 1-0 third-period deficit to win in regulation. Reilly Smith potted the game-
winner for the Bruins with 4:33 left to play, a mere 98 seconds after David
Krejci recorded the equalizer with the Bruins on the power play.
Iginla, the Flames' all-time leader in goals (525), points (1,095) and games
played (1,219), faced the club he spent 16 highly productive seasons with for
the first time since Calgary traded its longtime captain to Pittsburgh during
last April's trade deadline. The revered 36-year-old received a warm and
rousing ovation from the home crowd during postgame introductions.
"It brought back a lot of great memories," Iginla said of his return.
Tuukka Rask stopped 26-of-27 shots to help Boston improve to 13-3-1 over its
last 17 games, a stretch that has vaulted the Bruins into first place in the
Boston won on Tuesday despite playing without a handful of players due to
injuries, and another because of an impending suspension.
Defensemen Dougie Hamilton and Adam McQuaid missed the last game with lower-
body injuries, while forwards Loui Eriksson (concussion), Daniel Paille (upper
body) and Chris Kelly (broken ankle) also sat out with various ailments. All
of those players are expected to miss Thursday's game, including Hamilton, who
will miss 2-to-4 weeks after suffering an injury in Sunday's win at Toronto.
Meanwhile, Bruins forward Shawn Thornton is facing a suspension for his
actions in Saturday's win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Thornton, who grabbed
Brooks Orpik of the Penguins from behind during a scrum and began punching
him, is scheduled to have an in-person hearing with the league on Friday and
he could be suspended for six or more games.
Even with a short-handed lineup, the Bruins hope to continue their dominance
of the Oilers on Thursday. Boston has won 10 straight in this series overall
and has taken four in a row and 10 of the last 13 meetings in Edmonton.
Boston is 8-5-0 on the road this season and will complete its current trek in
Saturday's game against Vancouver.
The Oilers are 3-1-1 so far in December and are coming off Tuesday's 5-4
overtime win against visiting Carolina. Jordan Eberle's power-play goal 1:48
into the extra session saved two points for the Oilers, who led the game by a
4-1 score early in the second period before letting the Hurricanes back into
The Oilers coughed up a 4-1 lead over a period and a half, with Jeff Skinner's
goal late in the third tying it for Carolina. But Hurricanes defenseman Justin
Faulk was sent off 19 seconds into overtime, penalized for boarding after
hitting Ryan Nugent-Hopkins from behind in the corner to give the Oilers a 4-
on-3. Eberle then scored on a second-chance shot through the legs of Carolina
defenseman Andrej Sekera, who was covering the net on the left side for Cam
"It was a weird game but we found a way to win," Eberle said.
Taylor Hall, Nail Yakupov, Jesse Joensuu and Nugent-Hopkins also scored for
the Oilers, who moved to 2-1-1 on a five-game homestand that ends tonight.
Devan Dubnyk made 24 saves for Tuesday's win and he could get the start again
on Thursday. Dubnyk is 0-2-0 with a 4.57 goals against average in two career
games against the Bruins, while Rask boasts a 3-0 record and a 1.67 GAA in
three lifetime outings versus the Oilers.
12/12 10:58:22 ET