After the Montreal Canadiens dramatically upset the Washington Capitals last night, the Philadelphia Flyers finally learned their second round opponent for the Stanley Cup Playoffs: the Boston Bruins. Today begins a three-day preview of the position players for the B’s, starting this afternoon with the Bruins’ forwards. All this leads up to Game One, Saturday afternoon in Boston, Massachusetts. Without further ado, the forwards for the Boston Bruins:
Marco Sturm – Patrice Bergeron – Mark Recchi
Milan Lucic – David Krejci – Miroslav Satan
Blake Wheeler – Vladimir Sobotka – Michael Ryder
Daniel Paille – Steve Begin – Shawn Thornton
***Marc Savard is returning from injury in this series, and will center one of the lines, knocking one of these players out of the line-up
Three Forwards to watch on the Bruins:
1. Marc Savard, Center. The most interesting storyline from the Bruins stand-point – by far – is their all-star center, Marc Savard. Savard has been plagued off and on by injuries this entire season, and most recently missed the last few weeks of the regular season and the first round of the playoffs as a result of a vicious cheap shot by Penguins winger Matt Cooke. Still, when healthy – as Savard presumably is now – he is one of the best playmakers in the game. This is evidenced by his statistics, even for this season: in 41 games played, Savard had 10 goals and 23 assists for 33 points. The questions, of course, are: how healthy is Savard? And how much can he really produce offensively for Boston in this series? Something tells me that we’ll have a pretty good idea as to his capabilities early on in Game One, and if they’re anything positive for Boston, the Flyers may be in some big-time trouble to contain him moving forward.
2. David Krejci, Center. Krejci flourished down the stretch for Boston as behind Patrice Bergeron, he become the team’s go-to center due to the Savard injury. In the first round, he was arguably Boston’s best player, posting three goals and two assists in the series victory for the Bruins. Krejci has reason to be confident heading into this series, too. He has had his fair share of success against the Flyers in his career, scoring twice and adding eight assists in only eleven career games against the Orange and Black. With Savard back in the line-up, a lot of pressure comes off the back of #46, which could mean even more confidence will be added to his game. The Flyers can ill-afford to lose track of the Bruins Czech star in this series, or he just may burn them, big time. Just ask Buffalo.
3. Mark Recchi, Right Wing. A name that Flyers fans are very familiar with, and will hate to cheer against, no doubt. However, it’s something that needs to happen at this point, because Rex is simply the opposition. He tied things up against the Flyers in an eventful Winter Classic before Boston won the game in OT, and has been great for the Bruins all season long. He’s provided an incredibly stabilizing and calming force in the locker room at the age of 42, and that’s something that a team can never have too much of at this stage in the game. Recchi had five points in the first round series against Buffalo, and has 55 career points in 67 career games against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Offensive Leaders in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for Boston:
GOALS: Mark Recchi & David Krejci (3)
ASSISTS: Miroslav Satan & Patrice Bergeron (3)
POINTS: Krejci, Recchi, Bergeron & Satan (5)
PLUS/MINUS: Miroslav Satan (+2)
PENALTY MINUTES: Milan Lucic (15)