The Bruins' forward depth is about to be tested a little more. The team announced Saturday morning that center Tomas Nosek suffered a non-displaced fracture in his left foot on Thursday and will be re-evaluated in approximately four weeks.
Nosek was already dealing with an upper-body injury that has left him unable to take faceoffs for the last couple weeks and led to him being rested for a couple games, including Wednesday against the Islanders.
Joona Koppanen has filled in for him as fourth-line center, making his NHL debut on Jan. 12 and playing again on Wednesday. He lined up as the fourth-line center for Saturday's practice between Nick Foligno and A.J. Greer and will get the first crack to run with that spot while Nosek is out.
"I thought his first game was better than his second," Bruins coach Jim Montgomery said when asked for his evaluation for Koppanen. "His second, there's things that happened in the game that he's going to learn and get better from. ... But he didn't hurt us at all. He helped us win that game. Then I think today in practice is the best I've seen him look."
With Jake DeBrusk also out for at least another couple weeks, the Bruins have exactly 12 forwards on their roster as of Saturday. Montgomery said the team will call up another forward either Sunday night or Monday morning for their upcoming road trip.
That could be Chris Wagner if the Bruins are just looking for someone who's already used to living the 13th forward life. Or if they're looking for someone who can provide some center depth, it could be Marc McLaughlin (who has eight points in his last eight games in Providence), Vinni Lettieri (who leads the P-Bruins in scoring), or Johnny Beecher (who is a left shot like Nosek and Koppanen).
While the Bruins got bad news on Nosek, there was an encouraging update for Brandon Carlo, who was a full participant in Saturday's practice after leaving Thursday's game in the second period when he took a shot to the foot/leg.
Montgomery said Carlo was actually dealing with a "drop foot nerve" issue, but that he anticipates the defenseman being good to go for Sunday night's game against San Jose. A final call will be made on Sunday.