It’s up to Ryder, Peverley to fill Horton’s void in Bruins’ offense

But both Peverley and Ryder have first-line-caliber talent. The past production doesn’t lie. Neither player is out of his prime or banged up (as far as we know). They should both look at Game 4 as their opening day. Everything from recent games and the entire season goes out the window. They have a chance to prove their first-line material.

There are other ways for the Bruins to survive, and maybe even win the Cup, without Horton. Brad Marchand could heat up after scoring his first goal of the series, Boston could build off its 2-for-4 power-play performance from Game 3 and maybe the club could get more offensive production from its fourth line despite scarce minutes.

Among the laundry list of options, the one most likely to happen and help the Bruins, however, is the Peverley/Ryder option. Both are going to get their chance to get the job done unless one comes out of the gates Wednesday and claims the spot as his own. With those two inconsistent performers, that’s doubtful to happen.

Nathan Horton’s difficult to replace, as the Florida Panthers found out. Whether it’s a combination of both, or one outplaying the other, Michael Ryder and Rich Peverley have to step into the forefront and prove that there’s depth in those black-and-gold sweaters, not just untapped talent.

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