By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Bruins’ bench was missing a player for the start of overtime in a 3-2 Game 1 win over the Blue Jackets.
A pretty big one, as a few rotations through the lineup revealed, as it was second-line center David Krejci that missed all 5:15 of overtime due to an undisclosed injury suffered on a third-period hit from former teammate Riley Nash.
Here’s the hit that left David Krejci injured pic.twitter.com/WCmepxFgRa— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) April 26, 2019
Without Krejci at his disposal, Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy was forced to tinker with his lines on the fly.
That led to some rather wacky combinations from Cassidy out of the gate in overtime, but failed to become an issue thanks to Charlie Coyle’s game-winning goal scored just over the five-minute mark of the fourth frame.
And speaking with reporters after the game, Cassidy noted that while he didn’t talk with Krejci after the game, he does not believe that it’s going to be anything that keeps the 32-year-old center out of action for an extended stretch.
“I would rule [Krejci] as day-to-day for now,” Cassidy said after the win. “First thing someone said was well is he in protocol – no, it’s not a concussion. He got hit. He left the game, and by the time he was available to come back, the game was over, so we’ll see how he is in the morning. Hopefully, have an update for you then if it’s anything more serious than day-to-day.”
It feels worth mentioning that Krejci was indeed in the B’s dressing room after the victory, and seemed to be moving around without any sort of considerable limitations.
Should Krejci miss time, though, the most likely move for the Bruins would be to move Coyle up to the second line, bump Sean Kuraly up into a third-line role, and dress David Backes as Boston’s 12th forward. The Bruins do have more than a few players on their roster with NHL center experience, too, in Chris Wagner, Noel Acciari, and Marcus Johansson.
Krejci, who has twice led the NHL in playoff scoring, has two goals and five points through eight playoff games this spring.