BOSTON -- The last time Tyler Seguin returned to the Boston lineup he became an instant playoff hero for the Boston Bruins.
Seguin will be back for the Bruins in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET, VERSUS, CBC, RDS) after sitting out for a contest. Boston needs to replace the injured Nathan Horton, but the Bruins won't necessarily be relying on the 19-year-old Seguin to do so.
"You can't replace a guy like (Horton)," Seguin said. "Everybody just has to step up just like when (Patrice Bergeron) was out. Other guys have to step up even more and that's what guys are going to ask of each other for tonight's game."
Added Brad Marchand: "I don't think (Seguin) thinks he has to replace (Horton). Nobody is going to replace (Horton). He plays a very versatile game and I don't think anyone can come in and replace him. (Seguin) just needs to come in and play his game and he will help us out."
The Bruins have tried to be patient with Seguin, the second pick of the 2010 Entry Draft. The grind of a full NHL season has gotten to Seguin a bit, and he had only 1 goal in his final 20 regular-season games.
When the playoffs started, Seguin had to sit and wait for his opportunity. It came in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, when Bergeron was out with a concussion. He had a highlight-reel goal and an assist in a loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning, but it was the glimpse of his speed-skill combination on his goal that tantalized Bruins fans.
He followed that with an epic four-point period in Game 2 that turned the series around for the Bruins and had fans chanting his name at TD Garden.
"I just tried to get involved right away, just like I'm going to try to do tonight," Seguin said. "Obviously I got some good bounces as well in those games and it worked out on the score sheet. I want to do the same and I want to be good defensively tonight."
Just as quickly as Seguin became a breakout star in the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs, he slipped away from the limelight. He went seven games without a point, and was back in the press box for Game 3 against Vancouver.
His impact has been somewhat tied to his playing time. He's had three shots on net in five of the six postseason games in which he's played more than nine minutes. In the three games where he played fewer than nine minutes, Seguin failed to record a shot.
"I think you have to be understanding," Seguin said of sitting out. "I wasn’t happy with how I played the last game in Vancouver. I didn't think I played my best. I can't say I saw it coming or that I was shocked. It was it was."
Boston coach Claude Julien confirmed Seguin will be in the lineup against the Canucks in Game 4, but wouldn't divulge his plans for the forward units without Horton. Seguin could end up on the top line, but a place with the third group is more likely.
Either way, he's probably going to play more than nine minutes as the Bruins search for offense without Horton. He could see an increased role on the power play, as well. Seguin will be one of several players who could be the answer for who replaces Horton, but it's more likely going to be a group effort.
"I think everyone is going to have to step up now," Marchand said. "(Horton) has been such a big part of the team and he's been playing so well all throughout the playoffs. I think everyone has to try to produce more."