Boston Bruins: Matt Beleskey Out Versus Flyers


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  • The Boston Bruins will have to play Wednesday night’s tilt against the Philadephia Flyers without left winger Matt Beleskey. After skating on the Bruins top offensive line alongside David Krejci and David Pastrnak for the first five games of the season, Matt Beleskey will be receiving the night off due to an upper-body injury. The Bruins are unsure about when Beleskey will be able to return to the lineup, but the hope is clearly that he won’t miss any extended period of time.

    Through his first five games as a member of the Boston Bruins, Beleskey has scored one goal and added an assist. Beleskey has been a solid player alongside the Bruins top offensive threats, playing a gritty style of game and moving the puck well for the Black and Gold. The Bruins will be looking to Beleskey to continue his hard-hitting style of play while also increasing on his point total throughout the season, just not tonight. The Bruins were almost without two top-six forwards in this contest, however, as Patrice Bergeron was almost a scratch due to his wife giving birth to their first child; a baby boy named Zack.

    With Bergeron being questionable early in the day, the Bruins lineup was sporting some makeshift lines:

    Loui ErikssonDavid KrejciDavid Pastrnak
    Brad MarchandChris KellyBrett Connolly
    Zac RinaldoRyan SpoonerJimmy Hayes
    Maxime Talbot – Jonas Kemppainen – Tyler Randell

    Fortunately for the Bruins, Bergeron has been confirmed for the lineup tonight, which balances the lines significantly:

    Loui ErikssonDavid KrejciDavid Pastrnak
    Brad MarchandPatrice BergeronBrett Connolly
    Chris KellyRyan SpoonerJimmy Hayes
    Zac Rinaldo – Jonas Kemppainen – Tyler Randell

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    Chris Kelly is a very solid player who can certainly fill in for the Bruins in a top-six role as a last resort, but a bottom-six role is where he excels. Moving Zac Rinaldo up to the third line alongside Ryan Spooner would actually give that line some additional speed, however, it wouldn’t bode well for the Bruins to use Zac Rinaldo in any role other than as a fourth liner. It also wouldn’t be ideal to break up the third line of Kelly, Spooner, and Hayes, who have clearly found their groove as of late.

    Brad Marchand said it best when talking about the possible absences from the lineup: “It’s big,” he said, “You can’t fill (their) spots. You have to just bear down and work a little hard, collectively try and fill their spots. We just have to know this team is going to be a tough opponent. We have to play simple or they’re going to take advantage of any minor mistakes.” There is no way to replace a player like Patrice Bergeron, and Matt Beleskey was signed to be a top-six left winger for a reason. Injuries are unavoidable, they’re part of the nature of the business, and the best that a hockey club can do is simply play hard and adjust until the absent player(s) return.

    Other notes:

    The Bruins are showing their support in the fight against cancer in the pregame skate

    Follow Brandon Share-Cohen on Twitter @BShareCohen to discuss all things Bruins and sports

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