LOS ANGELES - The Bruins fly home today with two spare defensemen and a pair of extra forwards aboard, the numbers on the front line bolstered by the return Sunday night of Rich Peverley, who logged 23 shifts and 16:44 in ice time in the 3-2 win over the Ducks in Anaheim.
Forward Trent Whitfield, promoted from AHL Providence before the three-game West Coast roadie began, likely will be returned to the WannaBs prior to Tuesday night's game against the Bolts on Causeway Street. Both Whitfield and energy line winger Danny Paille sat out the game in Anaheim, where the Bruins wrapped up the trip with a successful 2-1-0 record and firmer standing as the No. 2 seed in the East.
Meanwhile, spare backliners Mike Mottau and Joe Corvo, the latter of whom sat out for a fifth straight time on Sunday, will be joined Tuesday by ex-Michigan State defenseman Torey Krug. All three are expected to stay with the club through the duration of the regular season, though Krug, even if he were to see action over the remaining seven regular-season games, is ineligible to play in the post-sesaon.
Krug signed as free agent, not unlike goalie Marty Turco at the start of this month, and free agents who sign after the trade deadline (Feb. 27 this season) cannot play beyond Game No. 82.
''I knew it was in the works,'' said coach Claude Julien, referrring to the Krug signing, ''But obviously, I haven't seen him play. It can be a good initiation for him to be with us, spend some time. We've seen that before with having guys with us, it makes the following year easier for them.''
The 5-foot-9 Krug forfeited his senior year to turn to pro. Because he is small by NHL standards, he will be challenged to stick with the varsity, although the Bruins obviously feel his abundant skill package, especially on offense, will compensate for his lack of size.
Krug's three-year entry-level deal carries a base value of just under $2.5 million, with a $95,000 signing bonus each season. Like All ELS deals it is a two-way, with his minor-league contract paying $70,000 per season. All of which means, if he doesn't make the varsity the next two years, he will make a minimum of $165,000 per season. His base salary the next two seasons will be $832,500 if he stays with the Bruins, and he can double that if he were to hit all his performance bonuses.
The Caps follow the Bolts to town, playing on Causeway Thursday night, and the Bruins will spend the weekend in New York with a pair of matinee performances, Saturday on Long Island and Sunday at Madison Square Garden.