Boston Bruins Colin Miller and Tim Schaller Return to Lineup Against the Washington Capitals
The Boston Bruins are making some adjustments in their last game of the regular season. With injuries to Torey Krug and Noel Acciari, the Bruins now turn to Colin Miller and a returning Tim Schaller. Miller has been a healthy scratch as of late – though the move hasn’t been due to bad play. Miller has been a very good player in the Bruins lineup this season, but as has often been the case in his career, the team has favored veteran presence in the lineup which has led to John-Michael Liles getting increased playing time. Schaller has been out of the lineup for the Bruins due to injury but now figures to slot back in and fill in for Acciari’s physicality.
With Krug out of the lineup, the Bruins will need a new power play quarterback. As Bruins’ head coach Bruce Cassidy mentioned, Krug’s production will not be replaced.
"“Well, we’re not going to be able to replace what he does,” interim head coach Cassidy said. “He’s a special talent – power play, first pass, breakout, neutral zone transition, all of those things – so the onus will be on us to make sure we make the necessary reads in our breakout.”"
Miller Filling the Role
While the Bruins won’t be able to replace Krug, they have a very capable substitute in Miller. Though he’s only posted five goals and 12 points in 60 games this season, Miller has the skill set to man a team’s power play. He’s proven capable of producing offense and was a stud with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the OHL and the Manchester Monarchs prior to playing in the NHL.
If given the opportunity, he shouldn’t disappoint while filling in on the Bruins top power play unit. The Bruins have had a very good special teams unit this season and Miller won’t be thrown to the wolves on an inefficient unit that is looking for a spark. Instead, he’ll just be looking to keep the line moving as the Bruins do what they’ve done for most of the year with the man advantage.
Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson Debut
In addition to the Bruins making changes with Miller and Schaller, a new face will make his NHL debut Saturday night. Sean Kuraly is set to be a healthy scratch as the Bruins make room for Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson. The Bruins newest signee is set to center the team’s third line against the Capitals after finally obtaining his work visa.
Though the Bruins are playing for a top-three spot in the Atlantic Division, the team’s lines will look much different than they would have anticipated heading into the playoffs. With Krug playing such a big role on the team all year and Noel Acciari shining in his latest NHL stint, the team will be hoping that they can return sooner than later. Still, the addition of JFK and getting Miller back in the lineup are both positives to take away from the situation. A healthy Brad Marchand returning to the lineup in the team’s first postseason game will also provide a big boost.