The Bruins have been fortunate with good injury luck this season, but their depth will get what they hope is just a temporary test with Taylor Hall dinged up.
Hall has a lower body injury and returned to Boston, and he will miss the final two games of the Bruins’ Western Conference road trip, head coach Jim Montgomery told reporters Monday in Edmonton, per The Athletic’s Fluto Shinzawa.
Hall won’t be in the lineup Monday night in Edmonton and also will be out of the lineup Tuesday in Calgary.
Montgomery also said the belief is Hall’s injury won’t be a long-term issue.
The Bruins all but have the Atlantic Division wrapped up and can afford to take it slow with the third-line winger. It speaks to the Bruins’ depth that they can skate Hall, a former MVP, on the third line and not really miss a beat.
They won’t have to go above and beyond to replace him in the lineup, either. A.J. Greer was a healthy scratch Saturday in Vancouver, but he’s back in the lineup Monday night when he’ll center the fourth line.
Speaking of that depth, the recent addition of Garnet Hathaway in a trade with Washington will pay immediate dividends. He’s expected to remain on the fourth line alongside Greer and Tomas Nosek, while Nick Foligno moves up to skate on Hall’s third-line left-wing spot.
Hall has somewhat quietly remained an effective contributor for the Bruins. His 16 goals and 20 assists in 58 games don’t jump off the page, but his production compared to his ice time remains on par with some of his better seasons.
He’s averaging one goal per 60 minutes of ice time, a tick above last season’s 0.9 mark and would equal his best mark since also averaging one goal per 60 in 2018-19 with New Jersey, the season after he won the Hart Trophy. His puck possession numbers also remain solid despite being asked to play in his own end more than he has been accustomed to over the last few years.