Thursday, 10.08.2009 / 4:00 PMDUCKS (0-1-1) at BRUINS (1-1-0)
Season Series --
This is the first of two meetings between Anaheim and Boston this season. They play again Jan. 13 at Honda Center. In their only meeting last season, the Bruins beat the Ducks 6-0 in Boston. Michael Ryder had two goals and an assist and Tim Thomas made 35 saves for his fourth shutout. There were 58 penalty minutes in the game.
Big Story --
Boston wing Milan Lucic will be playing his first game since signing a three-year contract extension on Tuesday. In the Ducks-Bruins game last season, Lucic buried Mike Brown after the Ducks forward punched Lucic in the face. It'll be interesting to see if any bad blood carries over into this season. But the Ducks have other things to worry about. They blew a three-goal lead to Minnesota with less than 14 minutes remaining Tuesday night and lost 4-3 in overtime. The Bruins haven't played since their 7-2 win over Carolina on Saturday.
Penalties doomed the Ducks against the Wild. Anaheim gave Minnesota three power plays in the final period plus overtime -- and the Wild scored on all three. The good news, though, was the Ducks scored three times in the second period on goals by Joffrey Lupul
, Evgeny Artyukhin and Saku Koivu
. Anaheim scored only once in a season-opening 4-1 loss to San Jose this past Saturday. Jean-Sebastien Giguere gave up all four goals to Minnesota, so coach Randy Carlyle may go back to Jonas Hiller
tonight. Hiller gave up four goals on 37 shots Saturday.
After a sub-par showing in their season-opening 4-1 loss to Washington, the Bruins dominated the Hurricanes 7-2 on Saturday night. Lucic is feeling good after signing his contract extension and Marco Sturm, who will be asked to fill some of the scoring void left after the trade of Phil Kessel, scored a goal and added an assist in just 12:21 of ice time against the 'Canes. Marc Savard, who centers Lucic and Sturm, had a goal and two assists against Carolina.
Who's Hot --
Anaheim defenseman Ryan Whitney, a Boston-area native who made his Ducks debut in TD Garden last season after a trade from Pittsburgh, has a goal and two assists so far. Bruins left wing Steve Begin has three assists in the first two games, including a pair in the 7-2 win over Carolina. He had five assists in 62 games split between Montreal and Dallas last season.
Injury Report --
Ducks center Petteri Nokelainen, an ex-Bruin, is day-to-day with an abdominal injury. He hasn't played yet this season. The Bruins remain injury-free.
Stat Pack --
The Ducks have not lost in regulation in their last 10 road games, after finishing the 2008-09 regular season on a 7-0-2 streak away from home. … The Ducks have scored three goals on 12 shots in the second period this season while only getting one on 32 shots in the other two periods. … The Bruins were 4-for-8 on the power play while killing off 9 of 10 Carolina power plays in their 7-2 win. … This is only the 21st meeting between the clubs. Boston is 11-7-2 in against Anaheim. … Mark Recchi needs two assists to reach 900 for his career.
Puck Drop --
The Bruins, who play their first five games at home, have had three days of practice between games, and they'll get another break next week when they play only Monday and Friday. Anaheim is in a stretch of five games in nine nights. The Ducks also play at Philadelphia on Saturday and in New York on Sunday.
-- Dan Rosen, NHL.com