BAW GAWD!! THAT'S ONDREJ KASE'S MUSIC! After missing 53 games Ondrej Kase will make his return to the lineup tonight. The Bruins are now loaded up front but are still trying to make their final tweaks to the bottom six before the playoffs start. The Penguins and Capitals are locked into the No. 1 and 2 seeds already, the Bruins can clinch the 3rd spot in the East, and a 1st round series against Washington tonight by earning at least a point against the Islanders.
It was a nice surprise seeing Kase return to practice on Friday. You had heard reports all year long that he had been skating and working out off the ice, but I never thought he would return this (regular season) year. Obviously Kase is going to be a little rusty, but getting two games in before the playoffs so Cassidy can get a good look at him is huge. It was a reported upper body injury (I'm guessing concussion), and I'm glad he's well enough to play again. He's a damn good player and the B's are hoping he can make an impact on this lineup.
Charlie Coyle remains out but will be good to go for the playoffs. So let's look at the bottom six tonight...
Ritchie - Kuraly - Wagner
DeBrusk - Lazar - Kase
I mean, not too shabby. That's a speedy fourth line with DeBrusk and Kase on the wings. I imagine Coyle will slot in where Wagner is to start the playoffs. First time in a long time that Bruce Cassidy has had legit options in the bottom six. If Kase isn't up to speed for the playoffs I imagine Wagner will take his spot.
B's just want to get through these next two games healthy... but they should want to take care of business tonight (after a god awful third period on Saturday) so they can prepare for the Capitals...
It's a great night to win a hockey game.