[caption id="attachment_258" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="David Krejci will be doing what he can to keep Pittsburgh on their struggles."][/caption]
An Eastern Conference battle sets our stage for the game of the night tonight. The Penguins play host to the Bruins tonight on the NHL network. This is the first meeting between the two teams this season. Pittsburgh took three out of the four meetings last season outscoring Boston 11-9.
This should be a firecracker of a game because of the two teams rough history with each other. After Matt Cooke's vicious hit on Marc Savard the series has been full of tension. In between the pipes for Pittsburgh will most likely be Marc-Andre Fleury. Fleury has had a rough start to his season posting a 3.55 GAA and a .853 save percentage but is still the same dangerous goaltender that can steal a game like he did time in and time out in the '09 playoffs. For Boston I expect Tim Thomas to get the start with his 7-0 record. Thomas has returned to the Vezina winning shape he was in '09. Thomas has a 1.05 GAA and a remarkable .967 save percentage.
He doesn't need to be mentioned because he does it so often it's practically clinical, but of course big Z will be a factor tonight. Obviously Zedeno Chara is a dominant force every game he plays. He completely shuts down his side of the ice every shift. I think he'll be able to contain Crosby and the rest of the Bruins will do their job in turn.
I believe this game comes down to the special teams. The Pen's have struggled on the power play so far this season at just 13.3%. The penalty kill has not been much better for Pittsburgh at 87.5%. The Pens will have to stay discipline to give themselves a chance in this one. It's going to be a hard-hitting game with both teams throwing the body quite a bit. Nathan Horton leads boston in points, and I believe he will have a big game tonight. I'm also calling Tyler Seguin having a big game. He's a talented young player with major offensive abilities and with a struggling Fleury, Seguin could put on a shooting clinic.
My prediction is a hard fought and rough bout but with Boston edging Pittsburgh 4-2 with an empty netter. I think the Pen's are having a rough go at it right now and the Bruins have a hot goalie and a young talented team with a D core that is up there with the best of them in the league.
Star of the game? Nathan Horton with his great vision and offensive skill set.