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Colin Miller will not play for Bruins in Game 2

The Boston Bruins’ already shorthanded defense will take another hit on Saturday afternoon when Colin Miller will not be available for Game 2 of their series against the Ottawa Senators.

Miller played only seven minutes in the Bruins’ Game 1 win and had to exit the game after he was hit by Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki.

For a Bruins team that is already playing without Torey Krug and Brandon Carlo. That is not an ideal situation, and it resulted in rookie Charlie McAvoy playing more than 24 minutes (second on the team, behind only Zdeno Chara) in his NHL debut on Wednesday.

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With Miller out of the lineup, Joe Morrow will draw in.

Here is what the defense pairings will look like on Saturday.

The Bruins are also without veteran forward David Krejci for a second consecutive game, as announced by Cassidy on Friday.

Cassidy said that both Krejci and Miller remain listed as “day-to-day.”

Bruins swap backups by bringing in Subban, but Rask should be fine

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At the moment, the Boston Bruins recalling a goalie on an “emergency basis” isn’t anywhere near as bad as it sounds.

That’s how the move is labeled as the Bruins bring up Malcolm Subban and demote Zane McIntyre to the AHL on Friday, but the move could easily be just to get McIntyre some seasoning.

The Bruins face the Ottawa Senators on Saturday, and reporters such as NHL.com’s Amalie Benjamin indicate that this isn’t a bad sign for Tuukka Rask. It likely comes down to who will back up Rask’s backup.

Considering all of the bad injury news for the Bruins lately, this seems instead to be more of a paperwork move.

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In case you’re wondering about Subban’s development as the 24th pick of the 2012 NHL Draft, he’s been solid in the AHL … just not as impressive as McIntyre at that level.

Subban: 11-14-1 with a respectable .917 save percentage in 32 games with Providence; allowed one goal on 13 shots in an abbreviated NHL appearance.

McIntyre: .935 save percentage with 21-4-1 record in AHL; 0-4-1 with .858 save percentage in shaky NHL showings.

It’s promising that McIntyre’s been so solid with Providence, but judging by his struggles with the big club, the narrative that the Bruins are going “Rask or bust” still fits regardless of who suits up as the No. 2 for now.

Bruins rule out Krejci for Game 2, Colin Miller unlikely

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Boston’s depleted defense looks like it’ll be thinned out even more.

On Friday, B’s head coach Bruce Cassidy said that d-man Colin Miller would be unlikely for tomorrow’s Game 2 against the Sens, and ruled out top center David Krejci for a second straight contest.

Krejci’s absence doesn’t come as a surprise. As mentioned, he sat out Wednesday’s series-opening victory and has yet to return to practice while dealing with an upper-body injury.

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Miller’s absence comes after he was knocked out of Game 1 on a hit from Sens d-man Mark Borowiecki. That injury came with fellow blueliners Torey Krug and Brandon Carlo already on the shelf, meaning the Bruins are now looking at a potential six-man defense comprised of Zdeno Chara, Charlie McAvoy, Adam McQuaid, John-Michael Liles, Kevan Miller and Joe Morrow.

Morrow is the likely candidate to replace Miller, if the latter is indeed ruled out. It’ll be a tall ask of the 24-year-old, who hasn’t played since Jan. 22.

That said, Cassidy hasn’t ruled out recalling a blueliner from AHL Providence.

 

 

Charlie McAvoy debuts in huge role – and shines – for Bruins

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The Boston Bruins threw 19-year-old defenseman Charlie McAvoy right into the deep end … and that unusual debut went swimmingly.

His first NHL appearance was Game 1 of the Bruins’ first-round series against the Ottawa Senators, and it’s not as though McAvoy was eased into the mix. Only Zdeno Chara logged more ice time (25:32 to McAvoy’s 24:11) for Boston. He actually led all skaters in ice time through the first two periods.

That’s what you call a trial by fire for the 14th pick of the 2016 NHL Draft.

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And, again, he fit in remarkably well. Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy put it simply when he said that McAvoy was “terrific.”

Now, it’s one thing for your own coach to provide praise, even if some bench bosses sometimes want to keep a player’s head out of clouds. It’s another when P.K. Subban comparisons come about, and they’re not unreasonable:

As a reminder, Subban made an immediate impact for Montreal in 2009-10, playing a significant role in that run after appearing in only two games during the regular season.

The rave reviews are quite abundant.

With Colin Miller possibly added to an extensive injured list, the Bruins need all the help they can get. For all we know, these tough breaks might allow McAvoy to emerge as an immediate difference-maker.

Bruins steal ugly Game 1 win from stunned Senators

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The playoffs are a time for stars to cement their statuses as legends. Still, there are also moments that raise your eyebrows and games where it’s better to be lucky rather than good.

The Ottawa Senators kept the Boston Bruins from even managing a shot on goal for more than a period of time in Game 1. Bobby Ryan scored a tremendous goal to put his team up 1-0, and with Colin Miller added to the Bruins’ growing injury list, things looked grim.

Those injuries aren’t wiped away by winning … but for at least one night, that bad stuff didn’t really matter.

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Frank Vatrano broke that lull with a key third-period goal and (you guessed it) Brad Marchand delivered the game-winning dagger goal as the Bruins beat the Senators 2-1 to win Game 1.

Much like with the Rangers in Montreal, the Bruins managed to take away home-ice advantage and leave the crowd stunned.