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Preview: Bruins and Canadiens look to renew rivalry tonight!

It’s been a long time coming, but these two Original Six teams will finally face off against each other for the first time since February 2020.

NHL: FEB 12 Canadiens at Bruins Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Just the facts

When: Tonight, 7:00 PM

Where: TD Garden – Boston, MA

How to follow: NESN, 98.5 The Sports Hub

Rival SBN site: Eyes On The Prize

Know your enemy

  • 4-10-2, 10PTS, 7th in Atlantic Division
  • Nick Suzuki: 16GP, 4G, 10A, 14PTS; Tyler Toffoli: 16GP, 3G, 6A, 9PTS
  • Jake Allen: 4-8-1, 2.78 GAA, .905 save percentage

Game notes

  • It’s been a hot second, but the Montreal Canadiens finally return to the TD Garden tonight! It’s the first in their four-game season series. The next two games will be in Montreal (December 18, 2020 and January 12, 2022), with the final meeting of the season back in Boston (March 21, 2022).
  • The two last saw each other on February 12, 2020 when the Boston Bruins won 4-1 at home. David Pastrnak netted a hat trick and Patrice Bergeron added the other tally in the victory. During the 2019-20 season, the Bruins were 3-1-0 against Montreal.
  • The Bruins came away with a big morale win yesterday afternoon against the New Jersey Devils. After a disastrous third period against the Edmonton Oilers on November 11, the Bruins responded in New Jersey. Erik Haula opened the scoring in the first period with his first goal as a Bruin. Brad Marchand extended the Bruins’ lead early in the second on the revamped power-play. Moments later the Devils tied it, but Marchand struck again to make it a 3-1 game. Jesper Bratt closed the gap late in the middle frame. Bergeron cushioned the Bruins’ score mid-third period and Jake DeBrusk solidified the 5-2 win with an empty-netter.
  • The Canadiens fell 3-2 to the Detroit Red Wings in overtime last night. Ryan Poehling put Montreal up in the first period. The Red Wings attacked twice in the second frame to take a 2-1 lead heading into the third period. Chris Wideman netted an early goal in the third to tie the game, but after heading to overtime, Detroit handed Montreal a 3-2 loss.
  • Montreal is 2-2-2 in November. On the road this season, the Canadiens 1-5-1 and have had a hard time scoring in their opponents’ barns. They’ve netted nine total goals in their seven road games this season and were shut out once.
  • The Bruins’ top line is streaky! Marchand is on a six-game point streak with four goals and seven assists for 11 points. Bergeron has six goals and four assists for 10 points in his five-game point streak. Pastrnak is on a four-game point streak with two goals and five assists for seven points.
  • For the Canadiens, Nick Suzuki has nine points in his last five games with four goals and five assists. Tyler Toffoli has six points in the past five games with two goals and four assists.
  • The Bruins’ penalty kill is 82.5% effective, which is still 5th overall for the competitive Atlantic Division. But the Canadiens fall to the bottom of the pack with the lowest PK in the division at 70.4% - and 29th overall lowest in the NHL.
  • Although Haula finally netted his first of the season and DeBrusk added an empty-netter yesterday, the Bruins continue to struggle with secondary scoring. In these last three games, seven out of the last 11 Bruins’ goals were scored by the top line. Two of the remaining four goals came from defensemen.
  • Haula was on a ten-game pointless streak before registering that goal for his second point of the season and DeBrusk had seven pointless games between this goal and his last. Bottom-six forwards have contributed 17% of total goals while Bergeron, Marchand and Pastrnak combined have accounted for 51%.
  • Yesterday, Karson Kuhlman and Jakub Zboril subbed in for Craig Smith and Mike Reilly. Cassidy said Zboril will stay in the lineup tonight. Earlier Bruce Cassidy said Oskar Steen, who was called up from Providence on November 12, could play against the Canadiens.

See ya tonight!