At long last, the Boston Bruins appear to be getting healthier.
When the Bruins meet the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday at Prudential Center, it is likely the visitors will be welcoming the returns of three forwards.
After skating a lineup we might not ever see again in Saturday’s shootout loss to the Washington Capitals, the B’s will be getting back Jake DeBrusk (lower-body) and Brett Ritchie (upper-body), both of whom have missed the last five games. Patrice Bergeron also could return after missing one game due to a lower-body injury. He’s going to take warmups and is considered a game-time decision.
If Bergeron is back, Boston will roll with its usual top line, which allows David Krejci to return to the second line, where he’d skate with DeBrusk and Ritchie on his wings. That would give the Bruins the chance to keep the Anders Bjork-Charlie Coyle-Danton Heinen third line together while also leaving the fourth line untouched.
With Torey Krug, John Moore and Kevan Miller all still out, the Bruins will maintain the same defensive pairings, so Matt Grzelcyk and Brandon Carlo will stay together, as will Urho Vaakanainen and Connor Clifton.
Tuukka Rask will be in net for the Bruins, with Mackenzie Blackwood expected to get the nod for the visitors. Louis Domingue will back up Blackwood with Cory Schneider now in the AHL after clearing waivers.
Here are the projected lineups for both teams:
BOSTON BRUINS (12-3-5)
Brad Marchand–Patrice Bergeron–David Pastrnak
Jake DeBrusk–David Krejci–Brett Ritchie
Anders Bjork–Charlie Coyle–Danton Heinen
Joakim Nordstrom–Sean Kuraly–Chris Wagner
Zdeno Chara–Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk–Brandon Carlo
Urho Vaakanainen–Connor Clifton
NEW JERSEY DEVILS (7-8-4)
Taylor Hall–Nico Hischier–Jesper Bratt
Miles Wood–Jack Hughes–Kyle Palmieri
Blake Coleman–Travis Zajac–Nikita Gusev
John Hayden–Pavel Zacha–Wayne Simmonds
Andy Greene–Damon Severson
Will Butcher–P.K. Subban
Mirco Mueller–Sami Vatanen
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images