By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
After 13 straight losses to the Washington Capitals, Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy has decided to try something new.
On Thursday, that will mean it will be Jaroslav Halak, not the white-hot Tuukka Rask, that leads the Bruins out to TD Garden ice. It’s the same logic Cassidy applied when he turned to Halak to snap what was a nine-game losing streak against the Ducks earlier this season (the Bruins won that game behind a 3-1 final and 24-of-25 effort from Halak), and comes with the hope that it’s enough to get the surging Bruins over a hump that’s left them without a win against the Caps since 2014.
“We’ve got to get over the hurdle,” Cassidy said on Wednesday. “They’re the defending Stanley Cup champions and if you want to be the best you’ve got to beat the best. I know it’s a long season, but we’re playing good hockey.”
On a season-high five-game winning streak, the Bruins have outscored their opponents 19-9 over that span, while their goaltending tandem of Halak and Tuukka Rask has posted a .943 save percentage.
“I’d like to think our guys will be confident going into the game, not thinking about what happened Opening Night or over the years, yet still have a bit of that that, ‘Hey, enough’s enough’ type of attitude as well,” said Cassidy.
The Capitals will counter Halak with Braden Holtby. The dominant Holtby, who stopped all 25 Boston shots thrown his way on Opening Night this season, has a 15-2-0 record and .943 save percentage in 17 career games against the Bruins.