Julien does the “power play shuffle”

Kobasew

Kobasew

The Boston Bruins produced a respectable one goal in five power-play opportunities during their 4-2 loss to the Buffalo Sabres today at the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston, but that didn’t stop head coach Claude Julien from switching guys around in an effort to get things going in Boston’s favor.

By the time the Bruins were  on their last man-advantage of the afternoon, the first power-play unit featured Chuck Kobasew up front with regular first-unit forward Marc Savard and P.J.  Axelsson.

Julien was asked if he made the move because of something Kobasew had done to earn it or something someone else did to deserve a demotion.

“A little bit of both,” he responded after the game. “We needed some jam and it was one of those things, this was one of those games we needed a bit more jam. Chuck was providing us with some of that.”

Reading between the lines, and watching the power-play units throughout the contest, it was easy to tell that Julien wasn’t happy with the play of some of his man-advantage performers. Late in the second period, Phil Kessel replaced Michael Ryder with the first group of forwards before Kobasew took the spot in the third. And one power play featured the second group of forwards — David Krejci, Milan Lucic and Ryder — with the top defense pair of Dennis Wideman and Zdeno Chara.

The maneuverings didn’t pay off today, but no doubt the Bruins will be putting in some extra power-play work — and mixing and matching personnel some more — when they return to practice Monday.

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