BRIGHTON -- The Bruins dodged their first potential major injury of the looming regular season when defenseman Kevan Millar was diagnosed with a bruised knee after being hit by a puck in Tuesday's exhibition loss to Montreal.
“It’s good news. Day-to-day, so there’s nothing major," said coach Claude Julien. That’s where he is right now. It was a bruise.”
The hard-nosed, stay-at-home defenseman missed practice at Warrior Ice Arena again on Thursday morning
With Miller seemingly okay and the start of the season right around the corner, that means there might not be any open spots for young defensemen Brandon Carlo or Robbie O’Gara to start the season. That also means there’s a roster battle afoot with 34-year-old Christian Ehrhoff on a veteran tryout in B’s camp. The puck-moving D-man scored a goal in the loss to Montreal, and Julien expects the veteran blueliner to be in the lineup for both of the final preseason games as he mulls some tough roster decisions.
“We need to see how he fits on our hockey club, as well,” said Julien. “Playing those [preseason] games isn’t really about proving anything as much as it’s about ‘How does he fit in our group?’ That’s important. I guess we’ll make that decision when the time comes, but our goal is to give him that opportunity that he asked for, and that we were willing to give him because we want to see if he could be a fit for our hockey club.”
That may or may not be good news for a young vet like Joe Morrow on a one-way NHL contract if Ehrhoff continues to impress the coaches and shows he could be a good fit with the Bruins.
Here are the projected line combos for Thursday night’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets with most of the B’s big name veterans getting the night off: