The Boston Bruins were a busy team last week, playing four games in seven days, which included their first back-to-back on Monday and Tuesday. They ended the week hosting two Western Conference teams on Thursday and Saturday.
They remained unbeaten after a massive win over the Florida Panthers (5-3) on Monday before dropping a sloppy one in Ottawa to the Senators 7-5 the following night. After returning home to kick off a four-game homestand, the Bruins outlasted the Anaheim Ducks, thanks to the heroics of Linus Ullmark, to win in a shootout 2-1. The boys ended their week with a matinee game on Saturday against the Minnesota Wild, which ended in a 4-3 win when Taylor Hall scored in overtime.
This week the black and gold wrap up their homestand with two contests before embarking on a four-game road trip that begins on Saturday. Who’s on the schedule this week? Let’s find out.
Tuesday, Oct. 25, @ 7:00 pm vs. Dallas Stars (TD Garden)
The Dallas Stars sit at the top of the Central Division with nine points, just two ahead of the reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Colorado Avalanche. The team showed they could contend with Jake Ottinger in net, pushing one of the league’s best teams, the Calgary Flames, to seven games in the opening round of last year’s playoffs. The experts across the industry expect the Stars to contend for a playoff spot. Currently, they are one of the best teams in the league.
The two teams split their season series last year, with the Bruins winning 3-1 and the Stars returning the favor in a 6-1 win. Historically, these two teams have met 143 times, with the Bruins owning the matchup with an 84-31-23-5 record. Their .685 win percentage doesn’t take into account the Bruins are +168 in goal difference (543-375) against the team who relocated to Dallas from Minnesota in 1993.
Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron has played the Stars franchise just 23 times during his 18-year career and has nine goals and ten assists for 19 points. As he inches closer to a thousand points, he may reach that milestone before these two teams meet again on Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14, 2023) at American Airlines Center.
Thursday, Oct. 27, @ 7:00 pm vs. Detroit Red Wings (TD Garden)
It only took two weeks, but the Bruins will get their first taste of Original Six action when the Detroit Red Wings come into town on Thursday night. The Red Wings are an up-and-coming team with a star-studded lineup of rookies led by Lucas Raymond and Calder Trophy winner Moritz Seider. However, the team is one or two players away from being legit contenders for a playoff spot and a Stanley Cup title.
Last year, these two teams split their four-game series, with each team winning and losing on home ice and the Bruins gaining the upper hand in scoring 14-9. Historically, the Red Wings and Montreal Canadiens are the only teams from the Original Six era that the Bruins have a losing record against. In 611 meetings, Boston is 254-257-95-5 against Detroit, despite leading in scoring 1852-1822.
Throughout his lengthy career with the Bruins, David Krejci has played the Red Wings 31 times and has 25 points thanks to eight goals and 17 assists. After returning to the team this offseason, Krejci is only 32 games away from 1,000 in his NHL career and will see the Red Wings two more times this season. Next, these teams meet in a home-and-home series on March 11 and 12, 2023.
Friday, Oct. 28, @ 7:00 pm vs. Columbus Blue Jackets (Nationwide Arena)
In the offseason, the Blue Jackets shocked the hockey world by acquiring all-star winger Johnny Gaudreau. He is supposed to be one of the missing pieces to finally turn the Blue Jackets into contenders; however, after seven games, the team remains near the bottom of the division with a 3-4 record.
The Bruins travel to Columbus on Friday to kick off a four-game road trip and should not take this team for granted, despite their retooled lineup. The Blue Jackets have given up more goals than they scored, so to keep their place at the top of the Atlantic Division, the Bruins need to capitalize on nights they are the superior team.
Last season these two teams met three times, with the black and gold coming away with a perfect 3-0 record. Nevertheless, the games were never easy since they needed a shootout and overtime to earn two of those victories. The Bruins have destroyed the Blue Jackets in their short history (2000), having a 21-9-0-5 record against them. However, as previously mentioned, the two teams remain close on the scoresheet, with the Bruins holding a slight edge of 119-94.
Current Bruins forward Nick Foligno played the bulk of his career as a member of the Blue Jackets, serving as their captain for six seasons. He’s only played in seven games against his former team and has three points and a minus-one rating. Interestingly, those numbers are the lowest against any opponent throughout his 16-year career.
Check back every Monday for another Hub of Hockey Weekly post, where we preview more upcoming Bruins games.