National Hockey League Hockey Schedule, News, Tickets, Scores, Players, Blogs, Videos, Links and More
More Fan Site Teams:

Bruins still looking for answers at third line center spot

Bruins still looking for answers at third line center spot
Published On: Tue, Oct 09
Apr 3, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews (19) presents linesman Andy McElman (90) a jersey before the game between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins. Andy McElman was working his 1500th NHL game and his last one at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Almost a week into the regular season, the Bruins are still scrambling to figure out whata€™s going to work for them in the middle of their third line.

Youngsters Jack Studnicka. Trent Frederic and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson showed in training camp that they werena€™t quite ready for prime time right now, but could very well be in the near future. Sean Kuraly won the third line center job of out of training camp seemingly by default after being injured for most of the preseason, and had just a single shot on goal in each of the first two games without much in the way of offense from the third line.

The Bruins freely admitted heading into the season that they werena€™t quite sure what theya€™d get out of Kuraly offensively in a higher spot in the lineup, but the only way of knowing was to play it out during the regular season.

a€œI dona€™t know,a€ said Cassidy. a€œThata€™s part of the experiment. Hea€™ll give you effort and hea€™ll possess pucks. Being on the third line wona€™t affect his defensive game. [Riley Nash], we werena€™t sure on either. Therea€™s a little bit of growing pains there and we understand that. What we need to make sure is that our two two lines are up to speed and our power play is producing. Then the bottom two lines give us good puck possession and hard-to-play-against minutes and then let their offensive game grow.a€

At the end of the day, it might just be that Kuraly is a solid fourth line center and thata€™s going to be his station in life at the NHL level. Thata€™s certainly still a pretty good place to be if youa€™re Kuraly.

So now Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy is tinkering with 34-year-old David Backes in the middle between Danton Heinen and Anders Bjork on his wings. It could be an interesting mix with the big, strong and veteran Backes in the middle calling the shots and setting the tone for the line, and Heinen and Bjork freed to use their speed and skill while being protected a bit by their big center in the middle.

Read the complete news article here...

More Featured News

As trade rumors swirl, Wayne Simmonds enjoying what may be his final days with Flyers
Published On: Tue, Feb 19
With the Flyers surging, right winger Wayne Simmonds is having too much fun to be concerned about the swirling rumors that he will be dealt before the Feb. 25 trade deadline.a€œIta€...
Philadelphia Flyers Recall, Activate Brian Elliott
Published On: Tue, Feb 19
The Philadelphia Flyers have sometimes been in need of healthy goaltenders this season. Not currently however, as they now have four on the active roster. The team todayA recalledA ...
Dustin Byfuglien out with a lower-body injury
Published On: Tue, Feb 19
Dustin ByfuglienA is injured again and there is no timetable for his return. He is considered week-to-week.Bad news on #NHLJets D Dustin Byfuglien. He has a new injury, lower-body, ...
Ryan Miller passes John Vanbiesbrouck for most wins by U.S.-born goaltender
Published On: Mon, Feb 18
Ryan Miller became the all-time leader in wins by a U.S.-born goaltender as the Anaheim Ducks beat the Washington Capitals 5-2 on Sunday night.Miller, who missed 24 games due to a k...
Sabres winger being evaluated, but did not suffer concussion in fight
Published On: Mon, Feb 18
Sabres wingerA Kyle Okposo is being further evaluated for an injury he suffered in a fight against the Rangers Friday night, Buffalo coachA Phil HousleyA said Monday.The 30-year-old...
Mats Zuccarello's four best fits as Rangers sell at deadline
Published On: Mon, Feb 18
No, those aren't boos a€” those are "Zuuuuucs" that echo around Madison Square Garden. But with the NHL's trade deadline fast approaching and the Rangers in sell mode, the question ...
Jerseys Hats Shirts Sweatshirts