PHILADELPHIA — In Bruce Cassidy’s world, there is no hunt for Black-and-Gold October. The Bruins coach went into Game 2 of the season at Wells Fargo Center on Wednesday night with the identical lineup he trotted out for Saturday’s season-opening win over the Stars.
It’s the NHL, which means things are always subject to change, and often abruptly, but for now status quo is the way Cassidy intends to go.
“Right now, the pieces fit,” mused Cassidy following the morning skate. “It’s kind of how we suspected they might over the summer.”
An injury sustained here by third-line right winger Nick Foligno may force Cassidy to make his first roster adjustment for Friday’s road date with the Sabres.
Foligno suffered an upper-body injury late in the second period of the Bruins’ 6-3 loss and was done for the night, logging only 8:37 in ice time.
“Hopefully nothing serious,” said Cassidy. “But he wasn’t able to return — that’s never a good sign. We’ll see how he is [Thursday}.
Left winger Anton Blidh, the lone extra forward on the trip, could be brought in if Foligno remains hors de combat. If so, Blidh could move to Erik Haula’s left, with Jake DeBrusk shifting to the right wing.
Training camp had shaken out previous questions, chief among them whether Charlie Coyle would be ready for full-time duty in the wake of offseason knee surgery. The ex-Boston University forward returned on time, anchoring the No. 2 line between Taylor Hall and Craig Smith, which delivered rookie hopeful Jack Studnicka back to AHL Providence.
A training camp injury to Curtis Lazar meant free agent signee Tomas Nosek assumed his center spot on the No. 4 line, where he again Wednesday pivoted Trent Frederic (LW) and Karson Kuhlman (RW). Kuhlman, who scored in the first period Wednesday, likely would have started the season as an extra if not for Lazar being hurt.
John Moore and Jakub Zboril were the spare blue liners vs. the Flyers.
Newcomer Linus Ullmark again backed up rookie Jeremy Swayman in net, with Ullmark slated to go against his former Sabres teammates, who have posted a surprise 3-0-0 start after finishing 31st in last season’s Original 31.
. . .
Google the name “Marcus Foligno” and “Superman” and the Internet will flash up images of Nick Foligno’s baby brother delivering a Clark Kent-like leaping punch at Winnipeg’s Brenden Dillon in a Wild-Jets matchup Tuesday night in St. Paul.
Brother Nick, asked about it Wednesday morning, assessed it with rolled eyes and a wide smile. In their childhood, they often scrapped, sometimes to the point that their parents would clear out the living room furniture.
“I still don’t know where that came from,” said Nick, 33, who is three years Marcus’s senior. “Pretty funny. One thing about Marcus is that when he snaps, he snaps. I don’t think it was premeditated, he just went with it.”
Nick shot his brother a text message, to wit: “What the hell was that?!”
Marcus: “I don’t know, I blacked out!”
A pleased older brother said he has been impressed by Marcus’s start (three games/3 points/one Superman punch) and how much he has meant to the Wild.
“Whether it’s fighting or scoring a big goal to get them back in a game,” he said, “he’s kind of done it all for them. Pretty awesome to see.”
The Foligno brothers haven’t played on the same team since their childhood days, and Nick, prior to signing with the Bruins as a free agent over the summer, said he considered the possibility of joining Marcus in Minnesota.
“It’s something I looked into seriously,” said Nick, who signed a two-year deal with the Bruins for an average $3.8 million per year. “But, you know, sometimes you have to follow your heart, too.
“I love my brother and I’m really proud of his career. I just didn’t think the timing was right. Things just lined up better for me in Boston. and I went with my heart. It felt like the right fit.”
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Legendary right winger Mike Bossy, instrumental to the Islanders dynasty that resulted in four Stanley Cup titles (1980-83), made public Tuesday that he is battling lung cancer.
Bergeron, 36, was born two years after that last Islander title, but the Bruins captain recalled that the Montreal-raised Bossy, now 64, was an icon in Quebec.
“Growing up, you knew about him,” said Bergeron. “And the Islanders, I wasn’t old enough to realize everything they accomplished. But all of his records, the goal scoring, his approach to the game … ”
Over his own lengthy career, noted Bergeron, he had the chance to chat briefly a number of times with Bossy on visits to Long Island, where Bossy for years worked in the front office in myriad roles.
“A gentleman, a legend of the game,” said Bergeron. “We’ll be thinking of him and wish him all the best.”
Kevin Paul Dupont can be reached at email@example.com.