For the first time in the round-robin round, the Boston Bruins will have no last-minute lineup changes. Following practice yesterday, Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy gave the roster (below) for the Bruins’ final round-robin tilt today against the Washington Capitals to the media, and this morning he confirmed that it will remain intact to start the game today.
“I wanted you guys to enjoy your Saturday night,” Cassidy quipped to the media when asked if there would be any changes.
Should this full roster deliver a win or even a solid performance today, Cassidy wants to make sure they’re healthy and ready to go for the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs that start this week. With that in mind, should the situation dictate, he will pull back on the minutes for some of his core players. Cassidy saw a rival lose a key player to an injury in their round-robin finale last night when Norris Trophy finalist Victor Hedman went down with an awkward injury in the first period of a 4-1 Flyers win over the Lightning for the top seed in the Eastern Conference.
“We’re certainly not going to tax anyone unnecessarily. … Circumstances will dictate that” Cassidy said.
Cassidy Hoping Kase Provides Spark For Bruins
Winger Ondrej Kase will make his round-robin debut Sunday. Kase, who was acquired from the Anaheim Ducks just prior to the NHL Trade Deadline, has only played six games for the Bruins since then. He’s also participated in just two full practices since training camp and Phase 3 of the NHL Return began July 13. Cassidy know there will be some rust from kase Sunday but he’s going to focus on how he battle through that rust to see where he’s at.
“I expect rust. And typically comes with your hands, they’re a little slower than your legs. He’s got good legs, he’s young, so that’s not an issue right now,” Cassidy said Sunday morning. “So how will he recover from shift to shift if he gets stuck out there and in one-on-one battles, you can’t replicate hockey battles, so we’ll see how that plays out for him. I believe like everybody the first game that’ll be a challenge.
I expect he’ll be on top of pucks, I expect he’ll give us good energy on the forecheck. We’ll be in attack mode, hopefully their line the puck finds them and they work to recover it, getsome second chances because both him and Jake certainly have the ability to score and Krech to make those plays. Best case scenario he goes out there, gives us a real jolt and plays a great game. But at the end of the day it’s not fair to judge him on one game, he needs to get himself ready individually for Game 1 of the playoffs, so that’ll be his challenge today against live action and see where it leads us.”