Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask missed practice on Saturday, and his availability for Sunday’s game against the Flyers is uncertain.
“He wasn’t feeling well,” Boston coach Bruce Cassidy said. “Will he start? I’ll have to talk to Tuukka later and see where he’s at.”
Forward Brad Marchand practiced in full, the coach said. Marchand came up limping during Thursday’s exhibition game against Columbus, but Cassidy expects the pesky forward to be 100%.
When: Sunday, 3 p.m.
Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto
TV: NBC10. Radio: 97.5 FM.
What: Opening game for each team in the Eastern Conference round-robin, which will determine the conference’s top four seeds. Washington and Tampa Bay are the other teams.
Season series: Tight. Very tight. The Bruins beat the Flyers on March 10, 2-0, in the final game for each team before the stoppage in play. The Flyers won the first two meetings in shootouts.
About the Bruins: Goalie Tuukka Rask (ill) missed Saturday’s practice and his status for Sunday’s game is uncertain. Jaroslav Halak, who lost the two shootout games against the Flyers, would start if Rask can not. ... Rask shutout the Flyers on March 10. He has lost to the Flyers in regulation just once in the last six years. Rask is 12-1-3 in that span with a (gulp) .936 save percentage.
Right winger Brad Marchand practiced Saturday and will be fine for Sunday’s game. He came up gingerly after delivering a couple hits in the third period of the Bruins’ exhibition game on Thursday. ... The top line of Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Pastrnak is one of the best in hockey. Each had a goal against Carter Hart this season. ... Second- and third-line right wingers Ondrej Kase and Nick Ritchie will not play. ... The Bruins led the NHL with 100 points and probably would have been the East’s No. 1 seed. Now they have to get through a round-robin to claim it. ... Boston is wearing No. 26 decals on their helmets in honor of Colby Cave, who played three seasons for their AHL team. Cave, who spent this season in the Edmonton organization, died of a brain bleed in April. He was 25. ... The Bruins are designated as the home team for this game. Regular-season overtime rules are in play during round-robin games.
» READ MORE: Complete Flyers’ coverage on Inquirer.com
From the books: DraftKings had the Bruins at -127, Flyers +110. They also had Travis Konecny at 14-1 to score the first goal.
History lesson: As dominant as he’s been against them lately, the last postseason game Rask started against the Flyers was in 2010 when the Bruins put the finishing touches on one of the all-time gags. Not only did they blow a 3-0 series lead to the Flyers, but they also were up 3-0 in Game 7 and gave up four consecutive goals. Boston fans, however, will point out that their team won the Stanley Cup the following season while the Flyers’ drought is 44 years and counting.
The last word: “You have to learn to hate pretty quick. That’s what the playoffs are all about.”
-- Bruins forward Brad Marchand