Over the weekend, Milan Lucic took a slapshot off his foot in the Boston Bruins game against the Los Angeles Kings, and has not seen game action since.
Because of this, Jesper Boqvist was called up from the Providence Bruins, and will take his place on the fourth line with John Beecher – presumably for the foreseeable future until Lucic’s is able to skate again.
The problem is, taking a slapshot is not something to take lightly and is definitely something that may take longer to heal and could be worse for the team long term.
When the Bruins first signed Lucic in the off-season, it was clear that they were trying to bring back the ways of the Big, Bad Bruins. Now, unfortunately, with Lucic sitting on the sidelines, it appears that may go by the wayside.
They do still have Trent Frederic who is not afraid to drop the gloves, but they don’t have that unstoppable force that is unafraid to staple someone to the boards. Not to mention, the stature difference between the two.
Frederic stands at (a generous) 6-foot-2, whereas Lucic stands at 6-foot-4. Frederic is also a younger player who playing in just his fourth full season in the NHL, whereas Lucic has been around since the 2007-08 season.
Now, while Lucic’s injury does have the potential to heal fast, if it does not it could play into the team’s identity, or at least a facet of it. While they do have the goal-scoring going for them – and that is part of their identity – the Bruins ability to wear teams down and physically and not let them get an inch is really what has helped them to win games thus far – especially on the road.
Boston faces a grueling schedule in their second month of the season, and it is essential that they play true to their identity, or at least as close to it as possible.