CHICAGO -- While the Chicago Blackhawks are expected to tweak each of their forward lines for Game 1 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS), the Boston Bruins will keep the status quo.
Boston coach Claude Julien has established a track record of preferring to keep his lineup intact so far this postseason. He's had to adjust for injuries -- the most recent being to forward Gregory Campbell -- but the Bruins used the same 12 forwards from Game 2 of the first round until Kaspars Daugavins replaced Campbell for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final.
"We've been together for a long time now," Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg said. "Most of us know each other and it doesn't matter who is paired up or who is playing together up front. I'm sure some guys like to play with certain guys, but we've been rotating a lot, especially on the back end."
The Blackhawks are expected to put Patrick Sharp with Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa on the top line. In theory, Chicago coach Joel Quenneville will use his ability to make the last change to keep those three players away from Boston's top defensive players -- namely center Patrice Bergeron and the defense pairing of Zdeno Chara and Seidenberg -- as much as possible.
Julien has seen teams try to avoid Chara before, but the Slovakian captain often jumps over the boards midshift and ends up playing about half the game.
"In our system, everybody knows our game without the puck is important. I think that's what has gotten us this far, we've respected that, back-checked. Our numbers coming back have continued," Julien said. "Whether I have my fourth line out, guys you can talk about like [Chris] Kelly and [Daniel] Paille, I don't think anybody is worried about their game defensively, and Shawn Thornton, who has done a great job on that line as well. There's a lot of trust in our coaching staff when those guys are out there, even when they put a top line on.
"That's why I talk about the matchups up front -- not the end of the world. You'll probably see, as every other series, our back end matches up a little more aggressively than our front end. Joel already knows that, too, by the way."
Here is the projected lineup for the Bruins in Game 1:
Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Nathan Horton
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Jaromir Jagr
Kaspars Daugavins - Rich Peverley - Tyler Seguin
Daniel Paille - Chris Kelly - Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara - Dennis Seidenberg
Andrew Ference - Johnny Boychuk
Torey Krug - Adam McQuaid
Scratched: Wade Redden, Dougie Hamilton, Jay Pandolfo, Carl Soderberg, Jordan Caron, Matt Bartkowski, Aaron Johnson, Chris Bourque, Carter Camper, Niklas Svedberg
Injured: Gregory Campbell (leg)