The Boston Bruins went 0-3 in the Round Robin games inside the NHL bubble but starting on Tuesday night, the games actually count. Brad Marchand recently said that Boston used the Round Robin games as a “preseason games”.
So all we can do is hope that the Bruins can all of a sudden flip the switch and start scoring more goals because their opponent, the Carolina Hurricanes, are the real deal.
The Canes finished the regular season with a 68-38 record in the Metropolitan Division and picked up right from where they left off, as they swept the New York Rangers, who got the #1 pick, in the Qualifying Round.
The players to lookout for on Carolina’s side of things are Forwards Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen as well as Right Wing Andrei Svechnikov. All three players had over 60 points in the regular season and Aho led the team in goals by a wide margin (38).
The Bruins, on the other hand, were the #1 seed following the regular season before slipping down to the #4 seed after dropping all three games against the Flyers, Lightning, and Capitals.
They scored a total of four goals in the three games and granted, they were playing the other top three teams in the Eastern Conference, but it’s clear they need to step it up offensively.
And a big part of their success will be because of Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak. You could say that Marchand is more important than Bergeron but I just think Bergeron has that veteran leadership presence that could really help.
In the playoffs, a team can be carried by a goalie and if there is a team that it could happen to this year, it is the Bruins and Tuuka Rask has been up to the task so far.
He gave up a combined five goals to two of the best offensive teams in the league in Tampa Bay and Washington in the second and third Round Robin games so I would expect for Rask to be great in the first round.
Game 1: August 11 at 8pm ET
Game 2: August 13 at 8pm ET
Game 3: August 15 at 12pm ET
Game 4: August 17 at 8pm ET
Game 5 (If Necessary): August 19 TBD
Game 6 (If Necessary): August 20 TBD
Game 7 (If Necessary): August 23 TBD
(Photo: Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)