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Boston Bruins Schedule 2011: Northeast Division Leaders Up Next

The Bruins have a couple of big tests this week as they try and pull themselves out of a rut and back into contention.

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The Bruins are off to a dreadful start in their defense of the Stanley Cup. Boston sits at 3-7 after droppings its two games last week (and three straight overall). This week, the schedule does not offer much of a respite, with dates against the top two teams in the Northeast division. Even the Atlantic division also-ran Islanders, who the Bruins face at the end of the week, have more points than Boston right now.

The whole situation has prompted a "The Sky Is Falling" post from Scott Frano at SB Nation's Bruins blog, Stanley Cup of Chowder.

Vs. Ottawa at 7 p.m. on TSN, NESN: In the Senators, the Bruins face a team that likes to score and get scored upon --Ottawa ranks 5th in the NHL in goals per game and 30th in goals allowed. Boston will need to keep the Senators off the Power Play, where Ottawa is converting 28.9 (!) percent of chances.

@ Toronto at 7 p.m. on CBC, NESN: Who would have thought that the Leafs would be the Division leaders heading into this matchup. A win here would go a long way for Boston in the fight back into the playoff picture.

Vs. NY Islanders at 7 p.m. on Versus, NESN: This is the easiest game on the schedule this week, but the Islanders are no longer a pushover. New York has lost five straight, including shoutout and OT losses in its last two outings.

For the latest news and opinion on the Bruins, visit the Boston Bruins team page and our SB Nation's Bruins blog, Stanley Cup of Chowder.