With there being a bit of uncertainty with Boston’s lineup for tonight, the Bruins have opted to make a recall up front, announcing that winger Jesper Boqvist has been recalled from Providence. To bring Mason Lohrei back up after being papered down yesterday, Georgii Merkulov was assigned to Providence as well.
The 25-year-old had 21 points in 70 games with New Jersey last season but was non-tendered back in June, making him an unrestricted free agent. Boqvist eventually settled for a one-year, one-way contract worth the minimum salary of $775K a couple of weeks later with the hopes that he could lock down a full-time spot on Boston’s fourth line.
That hasn’t gone completely as planned as instead of securing a full-time spot, he cleared waivers at the end of training camp and has spent most of the season in the minors. Boqvist has done well down there, picking up 10 goals and 13 assists in 31 games with Providence while also making a pair of appearances with Boston.
As for Merkulov, he played in four games with Boston while on recall, being held off the scoresheet while averaging 10:35 per night. The 23-year-old has been quite productive with Providence, however, notching 14 goals and 16 assists in 31 games and should go right back to being in a top role for them.
As Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic notes (Twitter link), winger James van Riemsdyk is day-to-day so it would appear Boqvist’s recall is to help cover against that. Lohrei could also take his place in the lineup if they want to go with seven blueliners while Matthew Poitras is also available after returning from his stint at the World Juniors.