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Bruins (26-23-6) vs. Sharks (33-17-4) preview: Cassidy kick-off

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The Bruins begin their post-Claude era with a visit from ol’ pal Joe Thornton.

NHL: San Jose Sharks at Boston Bruins Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Just the facts

When: 7 PM

Where: TD Garden - Boston, MA

How to follow: NESN, 98.5 The Sports Hub, CSCA

Rival SBN site: Fear the Fin

Visiting leaders

Scoring: Brent Burns: 22G-35A-57PTS; Joe Pavelski: 18G-29A-47PTS

Goaltending: Martin Jones: 27-15-4, .917 sv%, 2.25 GAA

Important note

It is currently snowing sideways in Boston on Thursday morning, with a nor’easter and potential blizzard conditions set to hang around for the rest of the day.

With many forecasts suggesting up to 15+ inches of snow, with snow continuing through 11 PM, don’t be surprised if this game gets postponed.

The league will likely force it through, as the Sharks don’t come out to the east coast very often, but the conditions in the city could be treacherous enough to give the league no choice.

Game notes

  • The Bruce Cassidy era begins tonight, and what better way to kick things off than against a division-leading Western Conference team?! Fun!
  • Brent Burns is a delight. Not only is his beard fearsome and his man bun hilarious, but he’s also having an incredible season. He has 57 points as a defenseman. 57!!!!! Burns is one of those opposing players who is fun to watch every time he’s on the ice.
  • Reports indicated yesterday that Zdeno Chara was battling a minor ailment and would be a game-time decision tonight. Starting off Bruce Cassidy’s tenure without Chara would be less than ideal, to say the least.
  • Martin Jones is having a good season for San Jose, meaning it’s time to prepare your "shuld of kept jones" taeks. Please write them by hand on lined paper and mail them to the Garden.
  • Will the Bruins get secondary scoring tonight? Probably not.
  • It will be interesting to see what kind of wrinkles Cassidy puts in the lineup. Matt Kalman Tweeted yesterday that the B’s had a practice line of Vatrano-Spooner-Hayes, which is probably enough to make Claude think "maybe it’s a good thing that they fired me."
  • Peter Cehlarik is on the big-league roster for tonight. The 2013 draft pick is having a hell of a year in Providence, and is likely to make his regular season debut tonight.
  • The Sharks lost their last game in Buffalo, blowing a 4-1 lead in the final half of the third period before losing in overtime. Leafs fans know how you feel, Sharks fans.

Never forget

Joe Thornton returns to the Garden for the first time since being traded and promptly boards Hal Gill and gets tossed.

Don’t worry, the Bruins got destroyed in this game anyway.