It could have been much worse, but the Bruins will still need to brace themselves for a bit more lineup shuffling in the coming weeks, especially in their top-six corps.
Already without David Pastrnak (thumb surgery) up front, Boston will now be without its latest acquisition in winger Marcus Johansson for a bit, as the forward exited Tuesday’s win over the Hurricanes after colliding with Carolina’s Micheal Ferland just minutes into the matchup.
Marcus Johansson collides with Micheal Ferland and he's hurting. pic.twitter.com/FMhrwiUKQJ
— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) March 6, 2019
Johansson was brought to Massachusetts General Hospital during the game and was held overnight for evaluation. After going through testing, the Bruins announced Wednesday evening that Johansson suffered a lung contusion following the heavy hit, but added that the 28-year-old skater was discharged from the hospital.
The team added that Johansson will be re-evaluated in one week.
Obviously, not exactly what the Bruins were looking for, given that Johansson was only four games into his tenure with Boston and looking pretty effective on a line with David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk.
But all things considered, Johansson and the Bruins have to feel like they dodged a bullet when it comes to the official diagnosis. While Johansson will likely be out for at least a couple of weeks, the initial reply had many fearing the worst, whether it be a broken collarbone, separated shoulder or concussion.
Johansson should be good to go in time for the final weeks of the regular season and the Stanley Cup Playoffs — giving Boston a versatile weapon that can both skate in a top-six spot while also moving down if need be to give the team’s third line some added scoring punch.
But for the time being, Bruce Cassidy has a few things to sort out with a vacant hole once again present on Krejci’s line. Here are a few candidates to slot in for the Bruins with Johansson on the mend.