Coach Alain Vigneault had said it would be a game-time decision, but Tanev got off the ice with the regulars after Friday morning's skate, while Ballard stayed.
Tanev last played in Games 4 and 5 against San Jose in the Western Conference finals. He's a rookie, but he plays like a veteran in terms of poise and composure.
"When we've used Chris this year, he's been real steady, can make a real good first pass and beat the forecheck," Vigneault said Friday morning, speaking generally about Tanev's game. "He was a kid that was playing in Manitoba (AHL), we got injury trouble and he came up and did a real solid job for us."
Vigneault also said Friday that Dan Hamhuis will travel with the team to Boston for Monday's Game 6.
When asked if that meant the defenseman had a chance to play in the series, the coach would only say Hamhuis is "day to day" with a lower-body injury.
Hamhuis was hurt four minutes into the second period of Game 1 after throwing a low hit on Boston forward Milan Lucic.
Pierre LeBrun covers the NHL for ESPN.com.