It was a tough two-game stretch for Boston Bruins rookie Matthew Poitras.

Poitras was a healthy scratch for Thursday’s loss to the Buffalo Sabres and then had his playing time reduced in Saturday’s 5-3 win over the Arizona Coyotes at TD Garden.

Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery decided to not play Poitras at all in the third period with the game still hanging in the balance. The 19-year-old ended up receiving just 11 shifts for the game, which was the second-fewest on the team to only Pavel Zacha, who logged eight shifts after he exited early due to an upper-body injury.

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Not putting Poitras on the ice over the final 20 minutes was a calculated move by Montgomery and he explained his reasoning behind the decision.

“Valuing game management is something that we’ve talked to him about,” Montgomery told reporters, per team-provided video. “It’s still lacking in his game right now. We are paid to win hockey games and I’m going to go with the guys that I think are going to win us hockey games.”

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Poitras did register an assist on a key Danton Heinen goal midway through the second period, but with the Bruins trying to protect a lead in the final frame, Montgomery opted to continually go with Charlie Coyle and Trent Frederic at the center spots.

Coyle notched 20:17 of ice time, which was second-most among Bruins forwards, while Frederic got 15:13 of ice time.

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“I liked the effort (from Poitras),” Montgomery said. “I used Frederic a lot in the center position, too, in the pivot position. It’s a demanding position for us, especially down low. We figured we were going to spend a lot of time down low in the third period just with the way they were pressing. That’s the way it worked out.”

Featured image via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images