The Boston Bruins are coming off of their first loss of the 2013 regular season, and go on the road to take on the Columbus Blue Jackets. Boston was shutout at home by the Avalanche on Thursday night, as Colorado goalie Jean-Sebastein Giguere stopped all 38 Bruins' shots on the night.
The Blue Jackets have made some significant acquisitions over the last year, and despite their poor history are trying to make a mark in the Eastern Conference. Like most teams in the league, the Bruins hold a slight advantage in the talent department over the Jackets. The B's are coming off a loss, and it will be interesting to see how they respond from a night of offensive frustration.
1) Nathan Horton now on the other side.
Of the players Columbus picked up in the offseason, none will be more familiar to the Bruins than winger Nathan Horton. Horton was a disappointing regular season player, but was always able to turn it on come playoff time.
As a free-agent, the hulking winger opted for the big pay day from Columbus. There shouldn't be much animosity from Bruins players as Horton seemed to be a player that was well liked and respected within the locker room. That doesn't mean Horton is going to get a warm and fuzzy reception either, as the Bruins will be looking not to fall back down to .500 after an 2-0 start.
2) Bumps and bruises.
The Bruins first three games were not without some moments for concern. In game two, Brad Marchand left the game after sustaining a vicious hit from the Wings Justin Abdelkader. Marchand would play the next night, so it seems like everything turned out just fine.
Winger Carl Sodderberg is also still out with an ankle injury. The B's have been getting solid play from Jordan Caron, who has been taking advantage of his opportunity while the big Swede has sat out. Fortunately for Boston they have ample depth on the wing to be able accommodate any minor injuries that have arisen, or may occur in the future.
3) Columbus is much improved.
These aren't your grandfather's….well, lets just say that this isn't the same Blue Jackets team from the last ten years. The organization that has often been the doormat of the NHL is well on its way to turning things around. In the past two seasons Columbus has added high-profile names such as Marion Gaborik and Nathan Horton, as well as under the radar moves like trading for former Flyers' goalie Sergei Bobrovsky.
Last year, Bobrovsky went on to win the Vezina Trophy as the league's best goaltender. Lockout not withstanding, the Russian native was a deserving recipient, and is out to prove that last season was no fluke. For a Bruins offense that is looking to get into a groove offensively, the Jackets' goalie will present another challenge in net.
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