The Bruins did not have many complaints about Adam McQuaid’s game. The hard-nosed defenseman, knocked out twice because of a groin and hip ailment, had dressed for 12 straight games since returning Dec. 23. McQuaid played heavy and angry minutes, perhaps pushed by fellow right-shot defenseman Kevan Miller.
That 12-game stretch came to an end Monday.
McQuaid did not play against the Kings because of a leg injury. He had been limited to 8:57 of ice time against Chicago Sunday and is considered day-to-day.
Because of McQuaid’s unavailability, Zach Trotman played in his second career NHL game. The right-shot defenseman played on the third pairing with Torey Krug and wore No. 62. (He wore No. 42 in his debut against the Senators last month.)
Trotman had one shot and two hits in 13:19 of ice time. The Bruins planned to use him on the point on the No. 2 power-play unit, but the first unit was on the ice for most of their 5:53 of man-advantage time.
“You’ve got to give that guy credit,” coach Claude Julien said. “He gets called up at the last minute, he comes in, and he has to play. He’s handled himself well.”
The buildup to Trotman’s second game was far more relaxed than it was for his first.
Trotman, recalled from Providence on an emergency basis Sunday, drove to Boston upon the news. He enjoyed a good dinner and participated fully in pregame warmups.
Trotman had none of those luxuries prior to his first recall.
On Dec. 28, when the varsity was in Ottawa, Trotman was in Glens Falls, N.Y., with his Providence teammates, preparing for that night’s game against Adirondack. That morning, Zdeno Chara was declared unfit to play against the Senators because of an undisclosed injury. Trotman, who was fortunate to have his passport, got the call to travel to Ottawa. His arrival for the puck drop was not a given.
Trotman took a taxi to the border. Once he cleared customs, a car service shuttled him to Canadian Tire Center. Warmups were more than halfway over when Trotman stepped onto the ice.
“A little bit more prepared this time,” Trotman said with a smile. “A little bit more time to get ready.”
In his NHL debut, Trotman played 16:41 and landed three shots on goal.
“I thought I had a pretty good game,” Trotman said. “I got a little more confidence from it. So I feel willing and able to step in tonight and play my game.”
The Bruins have a day off Tuesday. They will practice Wednesday for the first of three times this week before Saturday’s road game against Philadelphia. Given the layoff between games, it’s possible Dougie Hamilton could join the team for practice and perhaps even be available against the Flyers.
Hamilton missed his fourth straight game because of a concussion, but he resumed skating while the Bruins were on their two-game road trip.
Torey Krug was slow to get to his skates after Jordan Nolan stapled him to the boards in the first period. The hit brought Milan Lucic calling, and Lucic and Nolan engaged in a spirited fight. Krug remained in the game and scored a power-play goal later in the first. It was Krug’s first goal since Jan. 4 against Winnipeg. Krug had help from Chara, who screened Kings goalie Jonathan Quick . . . Miller was credited with a game-high five hits. His best was a third-period thump of Dustin Brown. “It’s an effective game,” Matt Bartkowski said of Miller’s style. “He’s a strong kid. I’m sure he’s a bear to play against for the other forwards.” . . . Ryan Spooner played 10:14, the second-least ahead of Shawn Thornton (8:56). Spooner went 0 for 5 on faceoffs. He and linemates Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson got caught chasing the puck in the defensive zone on several shifts. In the third, Julien rolled out a third line of Gregory Campbell between Daniel Paille and Eriksson. When Chris Kelly is cleared for game play, the Bruins might have to assign Spooner to Providence. Spooner has helped offensively on the power play and in five-on-five situations. But his inexperience on the draw and in the defensive zone is showing . . . Bartkowski blocked a game-high five shots.