David Krejci Takes Flight With Move to Wing, As Revamped Line Helps Bruins Snap Out of Slump in St. Louis


David Krejci Takes Flight With Move to Wing, As Revamped Line Helps Bruins Snap Out of Slump in St. LouisDavid Krejci's long-term future will likely remain at center. His playmaking skills are better suited for the demands of that position.

But as a temporary move to help snap him out of his recent funk, Wednesday's shift to right wing couldn't have gone much better for the Bruins.

Krejci didn't have a point, and on paper, the slump continues with him now managing just one goal and one assist over his last 12 games. But Krejci contributed to Wednesday's 4-2 win in St. Louis in many ways that aren't that obvious on the scoresheet.

Playing with Milan Lucic on the left wing and Chris Kelly at center, Krejci finished a plus-2, helping indirectly in two of Boston's goals. The more obvious role was played on the Bruins' second goal of the night. Kelly and Joe Corvo got the assists on Lucic's goal, which came when he tipped Corvo's shot in front. But Krejci got that play started with a crushing hit on Blues defenseman Kris Russell behind the St. Louis net.

That was one of two hits Krejci was credited with on the night in one of his most physical performances of the season. Playing on the wing appeared to invigorate Krejci, who brought some much-needed energy to a Bruins lineup that has been slumbering of late.

Krejci also added a pair of shots, a takeaway and a blocked shot in 20:03 of ice time, showing that not all of his contributions were ignored by the statisticians.

That entire revamped line played a crucial role in Boston's victory, with Lucic and Kelly each chipping in a goal and an assist. That included Kelly's eventual game-winner in the final minute of the opening period, a huge momentum changer after the Blues had erased Boston's early 2-0 lead. The trio finished the night with a combined plus-6 with four points, seven shots, five hits and three blocked shots.

"They were good," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "Your best players were definitely your best players. Having said that, I thought everybody played a real strong game. We wanted to stay away from guys that would only be passengers, and we didn't have that tonight. It was nice to see everybody come to play. They put their minds to it and did all the things they had to do to win."

Krejci and Co. were definitely among the Bruins' best players on Wednesday, and the Bruins will need them to continue to deliver such efforts if they are to put their recent slide behind them. 

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