As Bruins prepare for second half, here are five things to focus on

Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports

The second half of the season officially begins for the Bruins on Monday when they host the Dallas Stars in a 1 p.m. matinee at TD Garden in game No. 42. Prior to that, Boston comes off its bye week with a game against the Canadiens at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Bell Centre in Montreal.

At the break, the Bruins were playing well with an 11-1-3 record in their last 15 games, and have earned points in 11 straight (8-0-3). Boston’s schedule is tight out of the chute, playing five games in eight days, including three against the Canadiens.

The Bruins have become a playoff contender and fans should be excited about this team’s potential moving forward.

Here are five things to focus on for the remainder of the season and possibly into the Stanley Cup playoffs.