Tyler Seguin to Begin Playoffs As Healthy Scratch In Bruins’ Opener Against Canadiens

Tyler Seguin to Begin Playoffs As Healthy Scratch In Bruins' Opener Against Canadiens BOSTON — There aren't likely to be any surprises in the Bruins' lineup for their playoff opener on Thursday.

As expected, Tyler Seguin will be the healthy scratch up front. Shane Hnidy and Matt Bartkowski will be the odd men out on defense and Tim Thomas will get the start in goal.

Any mystery over whether Seguin would make it into the Game 1 lineup was ended when Bruins coach Claude Julien was asked about the logic behind sitting out the talented but inconsistent rookie following the club's optional morning skate Thursday at the Garden.

"There's no logic here," Julien responded. "I think it's just we've got 20 guys in our lineup [Thursday night] that we feel is the lineup we want to go with."

That lineup will include Michael Ryder on the third line with Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley, who are likely to each see time at center on that unit. The fourth line will feature Daniel Paille, who had three goals in his last five games after managing just three in his first 38, alongside Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton.

The top two lines will remain unchanged, with David Krejci centering Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton and Patrice Bergeron between Brad Marchand and Mark Recchi. It will be the playoff debut of Horton, Marchand and Campbell, but at least one veteran Bruin was confident the intensity of the regular-season matchups with the Canadiens should have the newcomers ready for postseason action.

"We've had a couple practice games against them," defenseman Andrew Ference said. "Some of the games we've had are not too far off the playoff atmosphere, so if you can draw on that it helps."

Ference will be joined on the back end by Adam McQuaid on the third pairing, with Zdeno Chara and Johnny Boychuk together in the first pair and Tomas Kaberle skating with Dennis Seidenberg.

For Montreal, Carey Price will get the start in goal after posting a 38-28-6 record with a 2.35 GAA and .923 save percentage during the regular season. Price is just 5-11 with a 3.17 GAA and .894 save percentage in the playoffs in his career, but the Canadiens are counting on him to perform better this spring.

"Carey has been outstanding for our hockey club this year," Montreal coach Jacques Martin said. "He has given us a chance to win every night and we expect the same in the playoffs."

Projected Bruins lines

Forwards
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Mark Recchi
Rich Peverley-Chris Kelly-Michael Ryder
Daniel Paille-Greg Campbell-Shawn Thornton

Defense
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Tomas Kaberle- Dennis Seidenberg
Andrew Ference-Adam McQuaid

Goalies
Tim Thomas
Tuukka Rask

Scratches: Tyler Seguin, Shane Hnidy, Matt Bartkowski

Projected Canadiens lines

Forwards
Michael Cammalleri-Tomas Plekanec-Andrei Kostitsyn
Mathieu Darche-Scott Gomez-Brian Gionta
Benoit Pouliot-David Desharnais-Travis Moen
Ryan White-Lars Eller-Tom Pyatt

Defense
Romas Hamrlik-James Wisniewski
Hal Gill-P.K. Subban
Jaroslav Spacek-Brent Sopel

Goalies
Carey Price
Alex Auld

Scratches: Paul Mara, Yannick Weber, Jeff Halpern (lower body), Alexandre Picard (lower body)