Boston Bruins lineup undergoes a tinker after Monday’s stinker of a game

BOSTON, MA - DECEMBER 10: Danton Heinen
BOSTON, MA - DECEMBER 10: Danton Heinen /

The Boston Bruins laid an egg on the ice and on the scoreboard in Monday’s matinee against the Colorado Avalanche.  After the less-than-stellar performance, the team composition for Wednesday’s game may look quite different.

There’s no other way to put it:  the Boston Bruins played a poor game on Monday afternoon.  The Colorado Avalanche, a team who recorded a measly 48 points last season, took the Bruins to the woodshed in all aspects of the game.   The Avs out-hustled and out-muscled the Bruins, something you wouldn’t expect from a team riding the momentum of a nice season opening victory.

Boston Bruins
BOSTON, MA – OCTOBER 05: Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy makes a point during an NHL game between the Boston Bruins and the Nashville Predators on October 5, 2017, at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The Bruins defeated the Predators 4-3. (Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

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In his two games this season, Bruins’ head coach Bruce Cassidy has appeared to be a big proponent of mid-game roster tinkering.  If you were watching Monday’s game against the Avs, even a casual observer would likely have noticed at least 3 or 4 different line combinations and defensive pairings throughout the game.  Unfortunately, even with all of that tinkering, the game ended up in a 4-0 shutout.

It appears, however, that the roster tinkering is not just limited to in-game changes made from the bench.  After the game, the Bruins recalled Danton Heinen from Providence, and signed former Minnesota Wild forward Ryan White to a PTO.  White is a 6 foot, 200 pound forward who would certainly add some grit to the lineup, if he stricks with the team.

On top of the roster transactions, Tuesday morning’s practice lines looked like this:

Changes abound

Basically, it doesn’t look ANYTHING like the lines we saw during the preseason or even during the first two games of the season.  Riley Nash has been promoted to the first line, up from the fourth.  Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak are a wing pair again.  Jake DeBrusk and Anders Bjork, the two rookies in the youth movement, are being centered by David Krejci.

The team looked very flat in it’s performance on Monday.  Considering the game on Wednesday is against the same team who pitched a shutout against them, I understand the tinkering.  However, one wonders whether the constant line-up changes and line tinkering could backfire, and lead to players not developing chemistry together.

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Obviously, this team is still looking to find themselves and their direction.  Some people believe Monday’s game exposed problems that the team will face this season.  All of Bruins nation hopes that this team will find itself and its identity quickly.  With teams like the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Tampa Bay Lightning looking as good as they have early on, the Atlantic Division looks like it will be a challenge this season.