With Bruins forward Nathan Horton, and Canucks defensemen Aaron Rome out for the rest of the Stanley Cup Finals, both teams’ lineups will look different in Game 4.
With the Bruins losing one of their top forwards, and the Canucks losing a bottom-six-defensemen, it’s easy to say that the Canucks got the better of the unfortunate deal. Vancouver is already down one defensemen, losing another for the series could loom large for the Canucks
Canucks defensemen Dan Hamhuis sat out his second straight game Monday night. Hamhuis received an undisclosed injury during the Canucks 1-0 Game 1 win. Andrew Alberts was inserted into the lineup to replace the injured Hamhuis.
Although Hamhuis is day-to-day, some media outlets have reported that Hamhuis may not return this season. Prior to the Stanley Cup Finals, Alberts appeared in just three games for the Canucks and averaged just 12:27 of time on ice.
Keith Ballard is the candidate most likely to fill-in for the suspended Rome. Ballard has appeared in nine playoff games and has failed to register a point. Ballard has averaged 14:04 of time on ice.
Canucks head coach Alain Vigneault has yet to announce who will be in the lineup for tomorrow night’s crucial Game 4.
“Well, we’ll make decisions tomorrow on our lineup. All year long we’ve used quite a few defensemen. We’ve been able to keep on winning. Obviously this is the Stanley Cup finals, the two best teams in the league. It’s a little bit more challenging.” stated Vigneault.
With the Canucks needing Ballard and Alberts to log some key minutes, Vigneault may be forced to break up some of the defensive-pairings that got the Canucks to the finals, a move that could certainly benefit the Bruins.
On the Bruins side of things, it’s very easy to guess who will get the call for the injured Horton. For the first time since Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals Tyler Seguin was the healthy scratch, as enforcer Shawn Thornton was reinserted back into the lineup.
There’s no doubt that No. 19 will be ready to go for the Bruins in Game 4. The key question the Bruins now face is who will take Horton’s spot on the Bruins top line.
Michael Ryder was called upon to lineup alongside David Krejci and Milan Lucic on the Bruins top line last night, but it’s no guarantee that No. 73 will be in that very same spot come Wednesday night.
There’s no doubt that Ryder has top-line-talent, but I honestly don’t like Ryder playing on the Bruins top line.
Here is how I would roll out the Bruins four lines, but hey what do I know?
Now it’s your turn Bruins fans,