Complete lineup: Boston feeling good as the Maple Leafs await.
ST. PAUL, Minn. — When the Bruins take the ice against the Maple Leafs to start the postseason next week, it more than likely will be with their most complete lineup of the season.
Assuming no injuries in today’s home finale against Tampa Bay that carries no meaning, the B’s should be getting Sean Kuraly back soon, which would be one of the final puzzle pieces (the other being John Moore, who may not play anyway).
It’s good timing to have everyone ready to go, even if they’ve actually been together in-game a short amount of time overall. The duo of Marcus Johansson and Charlie Coyle on the third line still is relatively untested, and the second line doesn’t have a for-sure right wing, with possibilities of David Pastrnak sticking there or Danton Heinen, depending whether they break up the top line.
Meanwhile, Karson Kuhlman is opening some eyes just in time for the postseason.
“I thought he was excellent (Tuesday night) with his puck plays in the neutral zone, touch plays, threading the needle, being on pucks as a first forechecker,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. “He’s got good speed and he’s a little bit underrated offensively probably. He’s been a good player for us.”
Nothing’s in stone, and likely those couple of practices before Game 1 will be more telling than whatever they roll out in the finale today against Tampa Bay.
Senyshyn makes debut
Zach Senyshyn played in his first NHL game Thursday night, getting recalled while the Bruins rest some of their starters ahead of the postseason. Senyshyn scored an empty-net goal to cap the 3-0 victory.
The 2015 first-round pick has had a winding path to this point, but was able to soak it all in for his first call-up.
“I’m still a young kid and really learning from the older guys,” Senyshyn said. “Having guys like Lee Stempniak (in Providence) and Paul Carey and Jordan Szwarz, learning from those guys, has really helped me take my game to the next level. A lot of that has to do with them.”
It’s also a chance for the Bruins to see him against NHL competition before next season, when he should contend to make the roster out of camp.
Connor Clifton’s second stint in the NHL has been considerably calmer than the first time around, and he’s been grateful for the learning experience.
Watching a couple of games from the press box has given some some pointers as well.
“Sitting out, you just want to watch and learn from older guys, guys who have done it for a lot longer than my little stint up here,” Clifton said. “I think positioning, a couple guys here are just outstanding, positionally, and that’s something I have to work on. Watching that a lot the past few games.”
Cassidy hits 300
Cassidy coached his 300th NHL game against the Wild.
“You’ve got more experience, you’re a little less emotional, probably, with little things that happen,” he said. “You’re better able to deal with them. A lot of changes in my life between then and now, obviously. Two young kids at home balance you out a lot better.”