Friday, April 18, 2014

Boston Bruins on Paper: Projected lineups and injury report vs Detroit Red Wings

The Boston Bruins are a bit banged up heading into their first round Stanley Cup Playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings - more banged up than the Wings, in fact - which after battling the injury bug all season long, would be a welcome change for coach Mike Babcock's charges.

Forwards Chris Kelly, Daniel Paille and defenseman Matt Bartkowski appear to still be on the shelf as they have not skated all week, nor did they take the ice in an optional skate this morning at TD Garden - Kelly dealing with back spasms, Paille a possible concussion (though there are reports that he passed the initial concussion protocol testing) and Bartkowski is laid low with a protracted case of the flu.

Tight-lipped Bruins' bench boss Claude Julien typically offered no updates on the status of any of the afflicted, but did offer that Paille skated on his own before Friday's optional skate.

If all three are scratched as expected, rookie Justin Florek would join the Soderberg line and Jordan Caron the Merlot, and trade-deadline acquisition Andrej Meszaros would fill in on the blue line.

Bruins' Projected Lineup

Forwards

Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Reilly Smith
Justin Florek - Carl Soderberg - Loui Eriksson
Jordan Caron - Gregory Campbell - Shawn Thornton

Defensive pairings

Zdeno Chara - Dougie Hamilton
Torey Krug - Johnny Boychuk
Andrej Meszaros - Corey Potter

Goaltenders

Tuukka Rask
Chad Johnson

The Red Wings are, arguably, as healthy as they've been since December, and there are whispers around the Red Wings that team Captain Henrik Zetterberg could possibly make a return from back surgery by the end of their first round series with the Bruins - but that won't be Friday night.

Zetterberg is planning on returning from an injured list that includes Daniel Cleary and Stephen Weiss - neither of whom will be returning - and Jonathan Ericsson, who has started skating this week as part of a plan to return soon from a broken finger.

There is no promise of either Zetterberg or Ericsson to return in time to help the Red Wings in the first round, though the best case would have them back in time for Game 6 in Detroit if the series lasts that long.

Red Wings' Projected Lineup

Forwards

Johna Franzen - Pavel Datsyuk - Justin Abdelkader
Gustav Nyquist - Riley Sheahan - Tomas Tatar
Tomas Jurco - Darren Helm - Daniel Alfredsson
Drew Miller - David Legwand - Luke Glendening

Defensive Pairings

Niklas Kronwall - Brendan Smith
Kyle Quincey - Dan DeKeyser
Jakub Kindl - Brian Lashoff

Goaltenders

Jimmy Howard
Jonas Gustavsson

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