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Brad Marchand has missed the last five games due to a suspension he received from the league for ducking a check against the Canucks. In those five games, the Bruins took six out of a possible ten points.
The power play struggled during Marchand’s suspension, with the team going only 2-15 with Marchand in the press box. Rich Peverley has missed a couple of games in the last five, and he is a big part of the power play. With two key players returning to the power play, look for the Bruins man advantage to produce some offense Thursday night.
The penalty killing unit, though, has been excellent in the absence of Marchand, killing off 12 of 13 man-advantage situations. Marchand is a regular penalty killer, but the Bruins have enough depth that his absence didn’t hurt them in that department.
Benoit Pouliot filled in for Marchand on the line with Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin, and he only had one goal and one assist in fives games. Look for him to skate on the third line with Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley in the game vs. New Jersey.