Posted by Fluto Shinzawa, Globe Staff January 7, 2010 12:13 PM
It was almost a given that the Bruins would have a strong showing against Ottawa one night after a 3-2 stinker against the Rangers. However, the question is whether the Bruins, who have been too comfortable this year, can jack up the emotions again tonight to bring some consistency to their game.
"We have to make sure we compete hard every night," said Julien. "I think we need our players to compete hard every night, especially the players that can make a difference in the game. You want them to be at their best. If we have that, we'll have even better success. That's what we're looking for right now. I think our guys seem determined to show that. Hopefully that part of it is there tonight."
Julien noted that the Bruins, currently in fifth place in the East, are still performing well. However, he wants them to be even better.
"We can't say that we're disappointed with our hockey club," Julien said. "We just know that our hockey club is capable of probably a little bit more. We're good right now. We don't want to be satisfied with just being good. We want to be better. I think that's what people have to understand. We're striving for something more than what we are right now. That's not to say we're not playing well, because we're in every game and we give ourselves a chance to win in every game. That's pretty good. But we don't want to be a team or an organization that gets comfortable."
- Milan Lucic said he continues to improve, but he has yet to be cleared by the medical staff, making him doubtful for tonight's game. "It's going to have to be from the medical people before I can even make my decision on him," Julien said. "Until I get clearance from the medical people, we can't use him. He's feeling better and looking better. We'll hopefully make a decision soon. We can certainly use him."
- With Adam McQuaid entering the lineup tonight, the Bruins will have four right-handed defensemen, meaning one will have to play the off side. Derek Morris is the leading candidate. Morris said he's played his off side for nearly half of his career.