Need to Know: Bruins at Sharks

SAN JOSE, Calif. – The Bruins will be aiming to extend their point streak to 13 games on Saturday night as their California road trip continues with a matchup against the Sharks at SAP Center. While Boston has been riding high on the heels of its Winter Classic win and a subsequent road victory over one of the Western Conference’s top teams in Los Angeles, the Black & Gold know they must not look past the Sharks, who currently sit well outside the playoff structure.

“Focus on ourselves, focus on the game we want to play,” he said David Pastrnak. “Don’t wait and see what they bring. We know they played [Friday] night. Obviously, they’re gonna be ready for us. We just need to make sure we are on top of them right away.”

The Bruins are fresh off what they believed was their best 60-minute effort in several weeks on Thursday night against the Kings and are keen on carrying over the things they did well for the remaining two games of the trip.

“I think we were on top of pucks, we were re-loading for each other and the D were keeping the puck alive in the O-zone,” Pastrnak said of Boston’s 5-2 win in Los Angles, during which he potted two goals. “It’s always fun when you spend a lot of time in the O-zone. I thnk that’s definitely one area we want to keep getting better and keep continuing the same style of play.”

Video: Pastrnak talks ahead of 10:30pm game vs. San Jose

Here’s everything else you need to know ahead of the 10:30 pm ET puck drop on NESN and 98.5 The Sports Hub:

A Different Look

The Bruins’ lineup could look a bit different on Saturday night with AJ Greer potentially sidelined by an illness. Coach Jim Montgomery said he might opt ​​to play seven defensemen, meaning Jakub Zboril would sub into the lineup on the back end.

“We’re not sure if we’re going to go four lines and six D or we might go seven D and 11 forwards,” said Montgomery, who also has the recently recalled Chris Wagner at his disposal. “Likes [seven defensemen] as a coach because sometimes it’s hard to get all 12 forwards a lot of ice time. You like to give everyone around 12 minutes and the guys that are playing really well, you can reward them by double shifting them.”

Opposing View

The Sharks are on the second end of a back-to-back after a 5-4 overtime loss to the Ducks on Friday night. San Jose (12-20-6) has lost four of its last five and sits seventh in the Pacific Division with 32 points.

San Jose is paced by defenseman Erik Karlsson, who is having one of the best seasons of his career with 54 points (13 goals, 41 assists) in 40 games. He is also riding a franchise-record 14-game point/assist streak.

“Keep the puck in the O-zone,” Pastrnak said of how to have success against Karlsson. “And bring his game to defense and make sure we limit turnovers because we know he’s up the ice and having a hell of a season. He’s a hell of a hockey player. We have to bring our game to the O-zone and try to take advantage of it there.”

The Sharks also boast an offensive attack that includes leading goal scorer Timo Meier (23-17-40), Tomas Hertl (13-24-37), and Logan Couture (14-18-32).

“They’ve got a very strong and fast corps in the forwards,” said Pastrnak. “For us, it’s try to focus on ourselves and bring our game to theirs [zone]play on offense as much as we can, be strong on the puck and be careful to watch out for those guys.”

With Kaapo Kahkonen (4-7-4, 3.79 GAA) getting the start in goal on Friday night against Anaheim, the Bruins could see James Reimer (7-11-3, 3.18 GAA) between the pipes.

Wait, There’s More

  • Montgomery said he was going to continue the goalie rotation he has employed of late, indicating that Linus Ullmark would get the start in goal on Saturday night.
  • Montgomery spent one season with San Jose in 2000-01, notching a goal and seven points in 28 games: “I had a really good time here, it was a close-knit group,” he said. “You were treated really well by the organization. I thought that was the tightest group, led by guys like Bryan Marchment, Todd Harvey, Mike Ricci…Owen Nolan – it was a really good group of people.”
  • Taylor Hall will be skating in his 800th career game on Saturday night.

Video: Montgomery talks ahead of BOS @ SJS

Saturday’s Projected Lineup


Brad MarchandPatrice BergeronDavid Pastrnak

Taylor Hall – David KrejciPavel Zacha

Nick FolignoCharlie CoyleTrent Frederic

Thomas NosekCraig Smith


Matt GrzelcykCharlie McAvoy

Hampus LindholmBrandon Charles

Derek ForbortConnor Clifton

Jakub Zboril


Linus Ullmark

Jeremy Swayman

Video: Bruins visit the Sharks for 10:30pm on Saturday


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