BOSTON (CBS) — The wait for the playoffs to begin for the Boston Bruins is nearly over, and Claude Julien appears to be making a couple of notable changes to his lines.
For one, Nathan Horton returned to practice on Tuesday, skating alongside normal linemates David Krejci and Milan Lucic. Horton missed the final five games of the season with an “upper-body injury” suffered in his fight with Jarome Iginla, and Tuesday was his first day back with the rest of the team.
The other major change to the lineup was on the third line, as Julien inserted Kaspars Daugavins in place of Rich Peverley. Daugavins skated on a line with Jaromir Jagr and Chris Kelly, while Peverley was one of three forwards wearing a green jersey, along with Carl Soderberg and Jay Pandolfo. It’s an indication that come Wednesday night, Peverley could be watching the Bruins’ first playoff game from Level 9.
After practice, Julien wouldn’t divulge any details about his lineup, even noting that Horton would need to be evaluated on Wednesday before a decision is made on him.
Peverley played in all but one of the Bruins’ games this season, scoring just six goals and recording 12 assists while posting a minus-9 rating. The stats would have had Peverley on pace for 10 goals and 20 assists in a full 82-game season, which would have been less production than his 11 goals and 31 assists in just 57 games last season. He ended the season with just one goal and one assist in his final nine games of the year.
Peverly came to the Bruins in the middle of the 2010-11 season, and he was a key contributor to the Stanley Cup run that spring. He played in all 25 playoff games, scoring four goals — including two game-winners — and adding eight assists while posting a plus-6 rating. Peverley filled in for Horton during the Stanley Cup Final after Horton was knocked out of Game 3 by Aaron Rome, and he made an immediate impact with two goals in Game 4.