We’re mere hours away from knowing who made the cut for the Boston Bruins’ Opening Night roster.
NHL teams have until 5 p.m. ET on Tuesday to submit their rosters to the league, with the first games of the season set for Wednesday.
We’ve taken not one, but two cracks at predicting the Bruins’ Day 1 roster over the last few weeks. So with the deadline looming, here’s our guess for which Bruins will be in the lineup, scratched and on the taxi squad Thursday against the New Jersey Devils.
Brad Marchand–Patrice Bergeron–Jack Studnicka
Jake DeBrusk–David Krejci–Ondrej Kase
Nick Ritchie–Charlie Coyle–Craig Smith
Anders Bjork–Sean Kuraly–Chris Wagner
The lineup looks all but locked in based on what we’ve seen in camp. Studnicka has played almost exclusively on the first line right side with David Pastrnak set to begin the season on injured reserve.
There are no surprises on the second line, but it looks like Ritchie will be the third line left wing — and by all accounts he’s been good there in training camp. That puts Bjork on the fourth line in the spot vacated by Joakim Nordstrom.
Lindholm cracks the roster as the healthy scratch since he proved last season he can go extended periods of time without playing while still being useful in a pinch.
Jeremy Lauzon–Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk–Brandon Carlo
Jakub Zboril–Kevan MIller
John Moore, Connor Clifton
Credit to Zboril, it appears he seized the chance to grab a vacancy on the Bruins’ left side. Miller was said last week to be the frontrunner for the third pairing right side spot, and he’s been playing consistently with Zboril, so it looks like those two will form the final pairing.
The Grzelcyk-Carlo combo has drawn rave reviews, while Lauzon and McAvoy have been together almost all camp.
No surprises here.
Karson Kuhlman, Greg McKegg, Zach Senyshyn, Steven Kampfer, Anton Blidh, Callum Booth
We’re operating under the impression that the Bruins want youngsters like Urho Vaakanainen and Trent Frederic to get the chance to play consistently in the AHL as opposed to just sitting on the taxi squad. However, with the AHL season not set to start until at least February, maybe they crack the taxi squad instead.
In turn, we put together a taxi squad of plug-and-play guys like Kampfer, McKegg, Kuhlman and Blidh. The Bruins put five players on waivers Monday — including McKegg, Senyshyn, Kampfer and Blidh — and provided they all clear, they could be safe candidates for the taxi squad.
It’s been unclear all camp what types of players the Bruins are looking for on the taxi squad. So for now, we’re not guessing it’ll be too prospect heavy. This is the area we’re least certain about, however.