The Bruin hope to celebrate New Year 2011 with a win over their Northeast Division foes, the Buffalo Sabres in a New Year's Day match-up at the HSBC Arena (7:00 PM ET, NESN).
Despite losing 3-2 in a shootout on Thursday night, the Bruins have come away with points in their last four games. The B's will look to extend that streak to five tonight when Tuukka Rask leads the Black and Gold onto the ice. Rask will get the nod in net tonight after 7 consecutive starts by Tim Thomas.
The Sabres (15-18-4), who are struggling to get to .500 and move into playoff contention, suffered a big loss last week when their leading point producer Derek Roy went down with a torn tendon in his left quadriceps. The injury occurred after Roy was driven into the boards by Dmitry Kulikov of the Florida Panthers. Unfortunately for the Sabres, Roy's ailment is not their only injury they have to deal with. Buffalo could be missing several key players tonight. Tim Connelly is listed as questionable tonight after undergoing surgery to repair a broken nose. Tyler Myers is also questionable, while fighting off a case of the flu. While an upper body injury will keep pest Patrick Kaleta out of tonight's contest.
- Gregory Campbell is still questionable with flu-like symptoms.
- The Bruins are 2-1-0 against Buffalo this year. The teams last met on December 15th, with the Sabres coming away with a 3-2 win over the B's behind a hat trick by Drew Stafford.
- The Bruins will now have to compete for eyeballs with the NHL Winter Classic. Due to rain and high temperatures in the forecast in Pittsburgh, the game was moved to 8:00 PM ET. The NHL will now have six games conflicting with the Winter Classic. Which brings me to my next point, why the hell is the NHL scheduling other games on New Year's Day? The Winter Classic is the league's premier television event of the year, why divert attention away from the game? For more on the Winter Classic, check out Japers' Rink and Pensburgh.
- Speaking of the Winter Classic, remember that Pittsburgh Penguins great...Ray Bourque??? You have to love the quality content of Bleacher Report.
- We reached our goal of 500+ likes on the Stanley Cup of Chowder Facebook page, which means that we gave away a $25 gift card to Shop.NHL.com. Congratulations to Dan Tucarella for winning the gift card! Dan, If you are reading this, please shoot me an email (stanleycupofchowder@gmail) with your email address so we can get that prize out to you. Thank you to everyone that helped us reach our goal.
- Tom Kowal and Brad Meier will be the referees tonight. Mark Shewchyk and Steve Miller will have the lines.
- Ryan Miller won his 200th career NHL game with a 4-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night. He is the 67th goalie in NHL history to reach the milestone.
- Blake Wheeler will play in his 200th NHL game tonight.
- Tuukka Rask is 4-2-0 lifetime vs. Buffalo with a 1.67 GAA and .948 save percentage.
- The Public Skate open thread gets started at 6:30 PM ET.
- For more on tonight's game, check out Die By The Blade