The Bruins, for the most part, are a team that seems set. That includes the top two lines. That includes virtually all of the defense – though there could be some looks given there. But the third line is where there has been some movement, where there could be an opening.
That could mean Daniel Paille gets a chance where he saw some success in the postseason. That could mean Carl Soderberg finally makes his mark. That could mean some of the prospects from Providence fill the vacancy.
For those guys, coach Claude Julien has some advice: “Take it,” he said on the first day of training camp. “Take advantage of it.”
He added, “We’ve been clear and it hasn’t just come from me. Peter [Chiarelli] is the one that has kind of come out and said, listen, we’re going to bring some youth into our lineup so if some guys want a spot in this hockey club, here’s a good opportunity to do that. It’s open.”
In addition to center Chris Kelly – who could be moved to the wing – the third line could come from the group containing Carl Soderberg, Jordan Caron, Reilly Smith, Matt Fraser, Craig Cunningham, Ryan Spooner, and Jared Knight.
“I think ideally we saw the third line that we liked when we won the Cup,” Julien said of 2011. “Not only were they kind of a dependable line, but they were able to give us some scoring. In a real perfect world, you’ve got your top two lines that you’d like to see score on a regular basis. Your third line should be able to give you some secondary scoring and your third line should also be able to give you some secondary grit that your fourth line gives you. To me they’re caught in the middle where they give you a little bit of both. That’s what we’re looking for from that line.”