Unbelievably, Bruins head coach Claude Julien wasn’t asked about the benching of Marc Savard and Nathan Horton for the bulk of the third Tuesday after the game.
Today, on a day off for his players, Julien addressed the matter.
“Right now, it seems that five-on-five, they’ve had some chances, but they’re not producing,” Julien was quoted on Boston.com. “You’re relying on that line to help you score some big goals. That’s the challenge right now that we have. You hate to break up the [David] Krejci line. Our fourth line has been pretty steady and reliable for the most part. You’re looking to find the pieces.
“You hope you can get that line going instead of trying to tweak it. But last night, we cut our bench down a little bit there late in the third. You have to do what you’ve got to do. Sometimes it’s a mindset. I think right now, [Milan Lucic] hasn’t scored in a while, but Horts has been even longer. With Nathan, he’s got to start having more confidence in his mind that he’s capable of scoring again.”
No surprise about his reasoning, but maybe there’s a little bit of surprise about when Julien decided to send a message to two of his most important offensive weapons — a tie game on the road in the third period.
Nonetheless, the ploy worked as the Bruins pulled out the win. You can be sure you’ll see Savard and Horton logging their usual amount of minutes tomorrow night in Atlanta. Julien has never had much of a doghouse, and as long as those two players get their level of play back where it needs to be they’ll have a chance to redeem themselves.