Bruce Cassidy had some decisions to make on Tuesday night.
With David Krejci tabbed as a game-time decision for Boston’s home matchup against the Golden Knights, Cassidy figured that any lineup tinkering was going to come right down to the wire.
But after Krejci skated without hesitation during warmups, the decision was rather easy to slot Krejci back in after a two-game absence. Par Lindholm was the likely one to be relegated to the bench, but Cassidy’s primary conundrum focused more on what supporting cast he was going to surround his veteran center with.
Based on prior history, sticking Krejci with Jake DeBrusk seemed like a logical fit. After all, that duo has logged an impressive 1,651 minutes of 5v5 ice time together over the past three seasons.
Cassidy had other plans, however.
When Krejci hopped over the boards on Tuesday, Danton Heinen was to his left and Karson Kuhlman was to his right. Both wingers have had extensive reps with Krejci over the last couple of seasons — with Kuhlman serving as Krejci’s RW during the final stretches of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
But that trio was largely untested as a line, having recorded just over two minutes of 5v5 ice time together prior to Tuesday’s matchup.
Cassidy’s call might have been a bit unorthodox, but his postgame rationale was sound.
“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” was the mantra from the B’s bench boss — and there’s been plenty to be encouraged about when it comes to a couple of new-look groupings in Boston’s middle-six unit.