Bruce Cassidy couldn’t have asked for a better start to the unofficial “second half” of the Bruins' 2019-20 regular season.
Since returning from the league-mandated bye week, Boston has posted four wins in a row, outscoring the competition, 14-3, during that stretch. The additions of youngsters like Jeremy Lauzon, Anton Blidh and Karson Kuhlman to the lineup have provided Cassidy with an embarrassment of riches as far as roster construction goes — giving Boston’s bench boss the chance to light a fire under some regulars in the lineup by way of healthy-scratch designations.
Sean Kuraly found himself on the outside looking at regular minutes last weekend in Minnesota, when he was benched in favor of other bottom-six options like Blidh and Par Lindholm.
Kuraly clearly got the message, given that the speedy forward has managed to string together some of his best performances of the season since returning to the lineup. In the two games since Kuraly has joined a third line with Charlie Coyle and Anders Bjork, Boston has held the edge in goals (2-0), shot attempts (28-11) and shots on goal (16-6) during that line’s 17:56 of 5v5 ice time.
All seems to be going well for Cassidy and the Bruins at the moment, but with Kuraly’s resurgent play — and the continued contributions of Kuhlman and other young guns — comes another issue for the B’s.