The Boston Bruins performance during Stanley Cup round-robin certainly didn’t resemble their standing going into the postseason but with that behind them, they will take on the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the playoffs on Tuesday.
The Bruins struggled going 0-3 in the round-robin portion of the qualifiers, earning them the No. 4 seed. They were out-scored 9-4 and were 0-for-9 in their power play.
Carolina, by contrast, shocked when they swept the New York Rangers in three games during the qualifying rounds. Not only did they outscore the Rangers 11-4, the Canes had two solid goaltenders to play.
Petr Mrazek and James Reimer both were in the net for the Rangers series. Mrazek started Games 1 and 2, only allowing three goals on 50 shots (.940 save percentage) while Reimer saved 37 of 38 shots (.974 save percentage) in the final game.
The two teams previously faced off during the 2019 Eastern Conference Finals where the Canes were swept but their performance this year could see a different outcome.
The Bruins don’t seem too worried, however, writing off the round-robin games as nothing more than a preseason.
“I mean, let’s call it what it is: They’re exhibition games for the playoffs,” Forward Brad Marchand said. “It’s hard to have the same mentality as a playoff series. So we’re not going to base our performance — what it’s going be against Carolina — on that.”
WHAT TO KNOW
Game 1: Aug. 11, 8 p.m. ET
Game 2: Aug. 13, 8 p.m. ET
Game 3: Aug. 15, 12 p.m. ET
Game 4: Aug. 17, 8 p.m. ET
Game 5 (if necessary): Aug. 19, TBD
Game 6 (if necessary): Aug. 20, TBD
Game 7 (if necessary): Aug. 23, TBD
WHERE: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Ontario
Vezina Trophy finalist goalie Tuukka Rask and leading scorer David Pastrnak both missed practice Monday after being deemed unfit to participate. Without going into detail, coach Bruce Cassidy said both are expected for Game 1.
Canes defenseman Dougie Hamilton could be in position to make his playoff debut in Game 1
The Associated Press contributed to this report.