As expected, the Boston Bruins summoned defensive help from Providence (AHL) this afternoon.

Kind of unexpectedly, they recalled two blueliners — Matt Lashoff and Johnny Boychuk.

Everyone knows about Lashoff. He’s had a cup of coffee with the big club each of the last two seasons and is known more for his offensive play and puck-moving than anything else. Boychuk, 24, is also an offensive force on the back line. This season he’s posted 4-19-23 totals for the P-Bruins in 22 games. Obviously, head coach Claude Julien wants to create competition for the line-up spot opened by Aaron Ward’s injury and give himself some options when it comes time to make out his line-up card.

Both players are expected to be in Wilmington when the Bruins practice Tuesday at 10:30 a.m.