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B's Missed Milan, but Not the Mark

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins -- The Bruins have become accustomed to playing without crucial pieces of the lineup because of injuries, but last night the B’s were missing forward Milan Lucic because of a one-game suspension for his hit on Zac Rinaldo Saturday.

Losing a gritty player like Lucic before a matchup against the rival Montreal Canadiens could have been detrimental to the team’s intensity, but Claude Julien’s crew had little trouble filling in during last night’s 3-2 win over the Habs.

“I think whenever you lose a guy like Luch [Lucic] for a game, everyone has to pick up their intensity,” forward Tyler Seguin said. “Any time you lose a top player everyone's got to rise up, not just one or two guys. We all got to step up and show our depth and it was definitely nice to get the win tonight.”

Despite losing Lucic, who has been the team’s top bruiser for the last four years, Julien stressed the importance of having his players stick to the game plan, rather than trying to compensate for Lucic’s absence.

“We don’t ask players to get out of their element – we’re a physical team as a whole,” Julien said. “Guys just have to go out there and play their game. We don’t change our game plan, and we don’t ask players to change their style either.”

Defenseman Andrew Ference said that the team was able to play so well without Lucic because the expectations are the same for every line.

“It didn’t seem like anyone was too uncomfortable with each other out there,” Ferrence said. “I think it helps when the system’s the same for every line. That makes it easy for guys to transfer from one spot to the next. It’s not like there’s a different set of rules for Luch’s [Lucic] line compared to the fourth line.”

The team played well without it’s hard-hitting forward, but Brad Marchand said he is excited to have him back for Friday’s game against the Florida Panthers.

“He brings a lot of energy into the game, and he's a big, physical presence out there,” Marchand said. “He creates a lot of opportunities, just by being physical, so we definitely miss that from him and from his line.”

---Anthony Gulizia
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