The Boston Bruins have started off the new year with nothing but dominant hockey, posting a 6-1 record in January thus far and 2-1 last week after beating the Philadelphia Flyers and Toronto Maple Leafs but falling to the Seattle Kraken. Boston unsurprisingly still holds the best record in the league sitting at 34-5-4 and are ten points ahead of the next closest squad with 72 points.
Boston started its week against Seattle, losing 3-0. It was a sloppy night for the Bruins, registering fewer shots on net and totaling more penalty minutes and giveaways than the Kraken. Linus Ullmark did all he could to keep the game within reach, stopping 28-of-30 shots and posting a .933 save percentage.
The Bruins had another tough opponent two days later in the Maple Leafs but came out on top, 4-3. The game was tightly contested throughout and Toronto was able to net a third-period goal to tie the game but Matt Grzelcyk netted the game-winning goal with only a few minutes remaining to secure the victory over a division opponent.
Boston showed no mercy to the Flyers, easily winning 6-0. The Bruins netted two goals in each period and Jeremy Swayman picked up his first shutout of the season. Both David Pastrnak and Pavel Zacha netted two goals each while veteran David Krejci brought his assist total to 23 on the season with three assists.
They will go on the road for the first time in three games to face the New York Islanders on Jan. 18 and will look to build off their dominant victory over the Flyers.
Top Goal Scorer: David Pastrnak — 35 goals (Patrice Bergeron and Jake DeBrusk are tied for second with 16 goals)
Top Point Getter: David Pastrnak — 62 points (Brad Marchand is second with 40 points)
Top Goalie: Linus Ullmark — 23-2-1 record, 1.92 average goals against (GAA), .936 save percentage
(All stats as of Jan. 17)
Bruins upcoming schedule for the week of January 19:
- Thursday, January 19 @ New York Rangers
- Sunday, January 22 vs. San Jose Sharks
- Tuesday, January 24 @ Montreal Canadiens
Bruins DraftKings Fantasy Preview for Upcoming Games
Injury Update: none
Thursday, January 19 @ New York Rangers
- The New York Rangers have a 25-13-7 record and are in third place in the Metropolitan Division and tied for fifth overall in the Eastern Conference with 57 points and a +24 goal differential.
- The Rangers average 3.2 goals for and 2.6 goals against per game while the Bruins post the league’s highest goals for (3.8) and league’s lowest goals against (2.1) so this could come down to which team maximizes their opportunities better.
- Much like Boston, New York has received stellar goaltending from their top option Igor Shesterkin, who posts a 20-7-6 record and a .918 save percentage on the season. He is tied for the fourth-most wins by a goaltender and is allowing just 2.43 goals per game, good for ninth-best in the league. Boston will need to create opportunities to get past Shesterkin consistently.
- These two teams last met on Nov. 3, where the Bruins comfortably won the game, 5-2. Boston is 5-5 against New York in its last ten meetings and New York is 6-2-2 in its last ten games so this game will be as competitive as it gets.
- Although the Bruins are third in power play percentage (27.9%), the Rangers have played well on the penalty kill (80.5%) and post the sixth-lowest penalty minute total in the league (343), so the prime opportunities may be limited for Boston’s playmakers but that hasn’t slowed them down much this season.
Sunday, January 22 vs. San Jose Sharks
- The San Jose Sharks have a 13-23-9 record and are second-last in the Pacific Division and fourth-worst in the Western Conference with 35 points and a -35 goal differential.
- These two teams last met just ten days ago when the Bruins won 4-2, led by two goals from Pastrnak. Boston has won ten straight meetings against San Jose and is red-hot to start 2023 so this should be a game filled with points from multiple players.
- San Jose’s main threat is Erik Karlsson, who has 58 points on the season and 44 assists, good for third-most in the league. He creates plenty of opportunities every night and Timo Meier has benefitted from being on the ice with him, totaling 25 goals on the season. If the Bruins limit him like in the last meeting, the game should be in control.
- Mainly due to Karlsson’s excellence, the Sharks have been a top team when shorthanded, posting the league’s third-best penalty kill percentage (83.8%) and ranking in the bottom 10 in penalty minutes (353).
- San Jose’s goaltending has been a huge question mark all season as neither goaltender can produce consistent play each night. Whether it’s James Reimer, who allows 3.44 GAA and is tied for the sixth-most losses with a 7-13-4 record, or Kaapo Kahkonen (3.87 GAA and .870 save percentage), the Bruins’ playmakers will exploit the poor goaltending and put points on the board.
Tuesday, January 24 @ Montreal Canadiens
- The Montreal Canadiens have an 18-23-3 record and are in last place in the Atlantic Division and second-worst in the Eastern Conference with 39 points and a -46 goal differential.
- The Canadiens are a young, struggling squad that can’t produce consistently enough, posting the league’s third-lowest goals and shots per game, 2.5 and 28.0, respectively. Cole Caufield has been a lone bright spot, however, totaling 26 goals and 10 assists on the season.
- Since Montreal is young, mistakes tend to happen. The Canadiens lead the league in penalty minutes (545) and are only successful on the penalty kill 75% of the time, opening the door for the Bruins’ top power play unit to take advantage as much as possible.
- These two teams have not met yet this season but Boston has won eight of its last 10 meetings against Montreal. The Bruins have won the last seven meetings and averaged 4.7 goals per game during that span.
- Considering Montreal faces the fifth-most shots against per game (33.9), the goaltending has been lackluster throughout the season. Jake Allen has a 10-16-1 record with a .892 save percentage while Sam Montembeault has flashed here and there, averaging 3.17 GAA and a .910 save percentage. Montreal would likely be better off with Montembeault against a high-powered offensive attack like Boston’s but either way, getting plenty of shots on net will pay off big-time.
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