Training camp is over and the Bruins are now practicing for a game that counts with their regular season set to kick off in Dallas against the Stars on Thursday night.
On Monday, the Bruins announced their final cuts as forward Peter Cehlarik has been placed on waivers for purpose of assignment to Providence AHL, forwards Anders Bjork, Trent Frederic, Cameron Hughes, Jack Studnicka were assigned to Providence and goalie Maxime Legace cleared waivers and was assigned to Providence.
Forwards David Krejci (lower-body) and Joakim Nordstrom (foot) remained off the ice.
Krejci Still Hurt But Will Play Thursday
Krejci hasn’t skated for the Bruins since their fourth preseason game September 30 after suffering a lower-body injury early in the team’s 4-3 overtime win over the Philadelphia Flyers. Head coach Bruce Cassidy is still optimistic that the team’s second line pivot will play in the season opener.
“He skated today, I talked to him and he’s progressing well,” Cassidy said following practice Monday. “We’d like to obviously see him get back into live action with us. He hasn’t played a lot in the preseason so these battle drills are important now, but it is what it is so we don’t want to risk further injury. So that’s where he’s at right now.”
Nordstrom likely will not be ready for the opener Thursday.
Bjork Will Start In Providence
Bruins winger Anders Bjork had easily his best training camp and preseason yet and more importantly, he’s healthy which is something he hasn’t been often since arriving in Boston as a hotshot prospect prior to the 2017-18 season. Unfortunately for Bjork, but fortunately for the Bruins, the team has so much depth that if Bjork did get the NHL roster spot one could easily say he deserved after this camp, he’d either be a healthy scratch or have limited minutes in a defensive forward role. The Bruins believe that Bjork can become a top 6 scorer in the NHL and right now, he’s better served to play more and honing his skill in the AHL.
“I mean we walked him through the situation on our team,” Cassidy said. “It’s not just about taking the 12 best hockey players, it’s who fits where,” Cassidy said. “He played well for us and we just think the best thing for him, and I talked about before he even started camp, that he should round out his game and now that he’s got some details into this game that might’ve been lacking when he got here, let’s get the offense going, feel good about scoring and consider yourself a guy that can score in the league. Where that slots him in is to be determined, but we don’t want to turn him into just a checker. We want to make sure he finds his offensive game and it’s going to be easier there than it is to do here.”
Potential Opening Night Lineup
Here’s what the Bruins lineup should look like for opening night Thursday, if as expected, Krejci does play.