Preview: Boston at Vancouver
When: 10:00 PM ET, Saturday, December 5, 2015
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
The Vancouver Canucks will try to begin turning their season in a positive direction when they host the surging Boston Bruins on Saturday night. The Canucks have scored just five times while dropping four straight games (0-2-2) and recorded just 16 shots in each of the last two contests to fall under .500 for the first time this season.
“We have been good all year creating offense,” Vancouver forward Henrik Sedin told reporters. “That’s not the problem. We have to realize that to win in this league you can’t give up three or four every game.” The Canucks, who have allowed 12 goals during their losing streak, go after their fifth victory in six contests against the Bruins since losing in the seventh game of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final. Boston has earned points in seven straight contests (5-0-2), despite dropping the past two games in extra time. The Bruins gave up the tying goal in the final seconds before losing at Calgary 5-4 on Friday.
TV: 10 p.m. ET, CBC, NESN (Boston), SNET (Vancouver)
ABOUT THE BRUINS (13-8-3): Brad Marchand netted a pair of goals Friday and boasts seven in the last eight games for the Bruins while hulking defenseman Zdeno Chara has scored in each of the past two contests. David Krejci leads the way for Boston with 25 points and Patrice Bergeron, along with Loui Eriksson, have each contributed 23. Tuukka Rask, who was 3-0-1 in his previous four decisions, replaced starter Jonas Gustavsson in goal during the second period and gave up the tying and winning goals but is the likely starter Saturday.
ABOUT THE CANUCKS (9-10-8): Daniel Sedin (18 points in the last 12 games) and brother Henrik (13, nine) are producing for Vancouver, but the Canucks are searching for secondary scoring. Alex Burrows has not posted a point in the past six contests and fellow forward Radim Vrbata is a team-worst minus-15 for the Canucks, who allowed eight power-play tallies in the last eight games. Defenseman Ben Hutton (foot) and forward Chris Higgins (upper body) could return to the lineup while blue liner Luca Sbisa (hand) is questionable.
1. Vancouver G Ryan Miller has managed two victories in his last 11 appearances.
2. The Bruins have killed 24-of-25 power-play opportunities in the last seven contests, including 9-of-9 in the first two games on the road trip.
3. Canucks 20-year-old C Bo Horvat owns a minus-13 rating overall and has not recorded a goal in 15 straight games.
PREDICTION: Canucks 4, Bruins 3