Facing the possibility of becoming the second consecutive defending Stanley Cup champion to fall in the first round of their title defense, the Boston Bruins will take to the Verizon CEnter ice on Sunday afternoon with their season on the line.
Series: Washington Leads 3-2
Location: Verizon Center, Washington, DC
Time: 3:20 P.M. (EST)
Tonight’s Lineup (Subject To Change):
Scratches– ….. Mike Mottau, Jordan Caron, Andrew Bodnarchuk
Nathan Horton (Concussion) – Boston’s top right winger was officially ruled out of the 2012 Playoffs by General Manager Peter Chiarelli during a press conference last Wednesday morning.
Tuukka Rask (Groin) — The B’s back up goaltender has been practicing with the team, but is not quite ready to return to action.
Adam McQuaid (Upper Body) — In what’s become one of the more unpredictable injuries of the season, Boston’s dependable blueliner will be forced to sit out again on Sunday after not making the voyage south to DC.
Opposing Goaltender: Braden Holtby (5 GP/2.00 GAA)
Prediction: Nine times out of ten in the NHL postseason, the more desperate team in each games normally ends up the winner. It’s been no different this spring as you’ve seen in game four in Los Angeles, games four and five between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh and game five just last night in Phoenix. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. While I would not be surprised if the Bruins’ are to force a game seven back at the TD Garden, I also wouldn’t hold my breath for it. Washington very much appears to be the more confident of the two squads and playing in front of a raucous red crowd of 18,000-plus that can only increase.
This will be the ultimate test of will for a Boston club that dealt with and survived an extreme amount of adversity throughout last year’s postseason. Today we will see what the 2011-’12 Boston Bruins are all about in a do or die situation.
Bruins 2 , Capitals 3
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About the Author: Boston Bruins writer for Hockey Independent. Have written for The Hockey Guys and SB Nation Boston. Follow me on Twitter @_BWoodward or shoot me an email at BWoodward.HI@gmail.com.