BRIGHTON, MA – The Boston Bruins hoped to reward veteran forward Vinni Lettieri for his strong play this season at the AHL level with the Providence Bruins with a callup ahead of the NHL All-Star break. Instead, Lettieri suffered an lower body injury during Tuesday’s practice at Warrior Ice Arena and will not be making the quick trip to Toronto for Wednesday night’s road game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
He needed help getting off the ice at Tuesday’s practice and was spotted in crutches by the media after practice.
Vinni Lettieri is on crutches. Will not travel to Toronto.
— Fluto Shinzawa (@FlutoShinzawa) January 31, 2023
Lettieri has 16 goals and 37 points in 41 games for the P-Bruins this season as their best player wire-to-wire this season, and could have been the kind of player that might have sparked the Bruins amidst a three-game losing streak. Instead, that responsibility will belong to 23-year-old Jakub Lauko as the other callup from Providence after posting eight goals and 14 points in 29 P-Bruins games this season after breaking NHL camp with the Black and Gold earlier this season.
Lauko admitted it was a tough transition heading back to the AHL after scoring his first NHL goal and doing a solid job as a fast, tough energy forward with a bit of offensive upside.
“Honestly, I’ve been looking forward to it the past couple of weeks,” said Lauko of his callup. “I was hoping that I would get a call. It’s nice. I feel good and excited.
“My whole stint here at the start of the season was kind of unexpected, so I was just happy that I had an opportunity to be here [in the NHL]. The first month [back in the AHL] was tough. I wasn’t really playing my game and I couldn’t get it. But the last month was great and I feel like my game is in a good place right now.”
In other health news, Jake DeBrusk skated on his own ahead of Boston Bruins practice in a no-contact sweater and is on schedule to return to the B’s lineup when they resume Feb. 11 against the Washington Capitals following the NHL All-Star break.