Things got so crazy toward the end of last night's game that it was easy to miss the fact that David Krejci wasn't playing in overtime.
Krejci was injured on a kind of late hit by former Bruin Riley Nash in the third period.
Here’s the hit that left David Krejci injured pic.twitter.com/WCmepxFgRa— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) April 26, 2019
Krejci was evaluated by the team and missed all of overtime, though Bruce Cassidy said after the game that Krejci wasn't in concussion protocol.
It looks like a shoulder or arm for Krejci, and he's officially been termed day to day, with a decision likely coming shortly before the game tomorrow.
If he's out, the Bruins need to find another second-line center and shuffle things around.
What are their options?
The logical choice would be to bump Charlie Coyle up to second line duties. However, that could involve separating him from Marcus Johansson, which seems nuts given how well they played last night.
They could elect to keep Coyle and Johansson together, adding David Pastrnak to that wing and calling it the second line.
The way I see it, they have three realistic options and two wild card options.
Let's start with the wild cards: they could slot in one of Trent Frederic or Jack Studnicka.
I know you're all going to ask about it, so we may as well put it out there. This almost certainly won't happen, and would almost certainly be a bad idea.
Both will get their shots next year...why 1) weaken Providence during their own playoff run and 2) throw them into a physical second-round series with little to no time to prepare?
Sure, it'd be cool to see either, but there are more reliable options available.
The three realistic options are a bit easier to justify.
First, the Bruins could bring David Backes back into the mix and let him try his hand at center again. Not a terrible option, but not the worst one either.
Next, the Bruins could put Karson Kuhlman or David Backes back in the lineup and move Sean Kuraly into a center role.
Finally, they could go the Coyle route, and bump him up to a new second line then mix things up from there.
All have their ups and downs. Jake DeBrusk, Charlie Coyle and David Pastrnak could form a formidable trio, but it would break up Coyle and Johansson.
Moving Kuraly up could add some speed to the DeBrusk and Pastrnak line, but it would break up what has been an effective fourth line.
Ultimately, however, it seems like Kuraly would make the most sense. It would allow the Bruins to keep their first line intact, and then play David Pastrnak as a sort of rover: some shifts with Coyle, some with Kuraly.
If you put Backes in, let him take a third line role for a fourth line of Joakim Nordstrom - Noel Acciari - Chris Wagner.
Cassidy could then juggle the lines as he sees fit. Kuraly at center seems like a much better option than Backes or one of the kids.
If you don't want to play Backes, you could slot in Karson Kuhlman instead.
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Danton Heinen
Jake DeBrusk - Sean Kuraly - David Pastrnak
Marcus Johansson - Charlie Coyle - David Backes/Karson Kuhlman
Joakim Nordstrom - Noel Acciari - Chris Wagner
What do you think?