Dale Weise has seven career points against the Bruins. (Francois Laplante/Getty Images)

Dale Weise knows Bruins-Canadiens rivalry will be different without Milan Lucic

DJ Bean
October 10, 2015 - 8:55 am
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Bruins-Canadiens games won'€™t be the same without Milan Lucic, but then again this rivalry has always found a way to stay heated regardless of who comes and goes. When the Bruins host the Habs Saturday at TD Garden, things will look vastly different from the way they did when Montreal won all four meetings by multiple goals a season ago. (Actually, there'€™s a very good chance the result will be the same; it will just look different.) Lucic is gone. Dougie Hamilton, whose biggest contribution to the rivalry was forgetting that penalties expire, has also departed. Zdeno Chara is likely to remain out with an upper-body injury, while the likes of Matt Beleskey, Zac Rinaldo, Colin Miller (making his NHL debut), Jimmy Hayes and Matt Irwin will all play against the Habs for the first time as Bruins. Despite Boston'€™s injuries and new faces, Bruins killer Dale Weise (seven points in his last 10 games against Boston, including the playoffs) doesn'€™t see Saturday as an automatic two points. "I don'€™t think Boston'€™s any slouch by any means," Weise said. "I think this is a good hockey team. They'€™ve added some good players; Beleskey'€™s a good guy that'€™s going to score for them, Jimmy Hayes we saw a lot in Florida. He scored a couple goals against us, so he'€™s a big body. With a goaltender like [Tuukka] Rask, similar to us, you always have a chance." Perhaps Weise'€™s most notable moment in Boston came after Game 7 of the 2014 second round. Following Montreal'€™s series-clinching victory over the Bruins (a game in which Weise scored), word got out that Lucic had threatened Weise in the handshake line. Weise has always praised Lucic'€™s game since the incident, so it wasn'€™t a surprise to hear him do the same after Saturday'€™s morning skate. "It makes our job a little bit easier without having him out there," Weise said. "He'€™s a horse to handle out there. You'€™ve got to be aware when he'€™s out there. "Picking up Beleskey, I know him from the West a little bit. He'€™s another big body. He plays hard. They'€™ve still got some players that can play hard over there." Boston'€™s biggest issue against the Habs will be holding up better defensively than they did Thursday night against the Jets. Though Montreal was hard-pressed for goals last season, they still managed to rack them up against Boston. The Habs have given Chara fits in recent years, but they'€™ll likely have an easier time with him out of the lineup. "Having him in the lineup is a big difference," Weise said of Chara. "He'€™s a big body. He'€™s hard to play against. Going in front of the net, you'€™re going to get a couple of whacks from him. It'€™s not a pretty place to be. He adds so much to their lineup." Though the Canadiens didn't make any sizable upgrades in the offseason, they should certainly be considered the better of the two teams at this point. Even if they won't say it, they should feel pretty good about their chances Saturday.