Boston Bruins (21–14–4) at Chicago Blackhawks (15–20–6)
Notre Dame Stadium
Chicago – Cam Ward (6–6–4, SV%: .886, GAA: 3.90)
Boston – Tuukka Rask (9–8–2, SV%: .912, GAA: 2.67)
Chicago (15.3%, 24th)
Boston (26.6%, 5th)
Chicago (74.2%, 31st)
Boston (79.1%, 17th)
Chicago (31.5, 19th; 34.2, 28th)
Boston (32.9, 7th; 31.2, 16th)
Chicago (9.2%, 19th)
Boston (8.5%, 28th)
Chicago (49.9%, T-17th)
Boston (50.3%, 15th)
Chicago 6’1”, 198lbs
Boston 6’1” 196lbs
The Blackhawks enter 2019 winning their last two games, and winning five of their last six. Strong outings against the Wild and Avalanche for Collin Delia gave the impression they would ride the hot hand into Notre Dame Stadium against the Bruins. Instead, it will be 34-year-old Cam Ward manning the net on New Year’s Day, despite Delia’s strong outings over the last two games.
Patrick Kane is having a stellar season. After collecting his 20th goal against the Minnesota Wild, Kane collected his 12th straight 20-goal campaign for his career. The 30-year-old right wing also is on a seven-game point streak (7-6-13 in that span) heading into the New Year’s Day matinée.
The Blackhawks dealt Brandon Manning (Stan’s big mistake from the offseason) and Robin Norell to the Edmonton Oilers for Drake Caggiula and Jason Garrison. Caggiula will not play since he was not able to report the team yet because of work visa holdups. Garrison was placed on waivers for purpose of sending him down to the Rockford IceHogs.
The Bruins enter the Winter Classic winning only one of their last three games. After consecutive losses to the Carolina Hurricanes and New Jersey Devils, the Bruins got back on track beating the surprise Buffalo Sabres 3-2 in Buffalo.
Per reports, defenseman Charlie McAvoy will not play on Tuesday afternoon with a lower-body injury. The Bruins are hoping for the young star to return for their game Thursday evening. Brad Marchand’s health was also uncertain, but he is confirmed to be “good to go” per Bruins’ head coach Bruce Cassidy.