Marchand looks good to go against Hurricanes

File photo

Marchand looks good to go against Hurricanes

RALEIGH, N.C. -- After missing Sunday’s game against the Blackhawks because of an upper body injury, Brad Marchand's availability for tonight's meeting here with the Hurricanes will be a game-time decision.

It certainly looked like Marchand was good to go while taking his turns during line rushes at the Tuesday morning skate, and he said as much after getting through practice, but the Bruins stopped just short of guaranteeing he was going to play. Still, it certainly looks like he'll be in the lineup.

“I felt a little better today,” said Marchand, who was the NHL’s second star of last week with four goals (including two game-winners) and eight points along with a couple of game-winning goals. If we had to play yesterday I probably wouldn’t have been able to play, but I feel good today. So I’m happy with the progress. It was more for the fact that if it had gotten worse than I could have been out for months. It was more precautionary that if I had taken another hit it could have been a long time, and just where we are this close to the playoffs. It just wasn’t worth the risk.”

It's still a bit unclear about the nature of the actual injury, and whether some of Marchand's absence on Sunday in Chicago was also about defusing a situation that could have turned ugly after his Saturday collision with Anthony Duclair.

If Marchand does indeed play as expected, it looks like Tommy Wingels will be the healthy scratch at forward with David Backes also returning from his three-game suspension for his hit on Frans Nielsen. Adam McQuaid will be the healthy scratch on the back end, and Tuukka Rask will be starting in goal for the Bruins against a Hurricanes team that still has an outside shot at the postseason.

Here are the projected Bruins line combos and the D-pairings vs. the Carolina Hurricanes based on morning skate at PNC Arena:




Morning Skate: Best all-time college hockey lineups

NBC Sports Boston Photo

Morning Skate: Best all-time college hockey lineups

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while welcoming in spring with open arms.


*Interesting exercise from ESPN putting together the best all-time lineups for a number of college hockey programs. We know about a lot of the powerhouse programs, but UVM could put together a pretty damn good lineup based on the players that have come out of the Catamounts program, including former and current Bruins Tim Thomas and Kevan Miller.


*Jack Eichel scoffs at the notion that his ankle injury should have caused the Sabres star to shut it down for the rest of the season.


*Nice work by Star Wars Rebels showrunner Dave Filoni to put together a Star Wars jersey again this season for the Wilkes Barre Scranton Penguins.


*Rob Rossi has got some major issues with ESPN the Magazine omitting Sidney Crosby from their Most Dominant Athletes of the last 20 years list. Yeah, I’d say that doesn’t make any sense. Not that anybody really cares about ESPN the Magazine or anything.


*Strange times with the CWHL as Cassie Campbell Pascal has resigned from her role as a CWHL Governor ahead of the league’s marquee weekend.


*The Golden Knights and Marc-Andre Fleury are both tied together in their rise toward the top of the NHL this season.


*For something completely different: Never before has a mustache been talked about as much as the CGI mustache for Henry Cavill in Justice League, and now it’s gone forever.


Donato misses Bruins practice for Harvard class commitment

Donato misses Bruins practice for Harvard class commitment

It might have caused a ripple when Ryan Donato wasn’t on the ice on Tuesday afternoon in St. Louis for Bruins practice on the day after his brilliant, three-point NHL debut for the Black and Gold. But the 21-year-old Donato was still back in the Boston area fulfilling some class requirements at Harvard University to help him close out the current semester properly, and not lose the credits that will keep him in line with fulfilling his junior year at Harvard University.

Believe it or not, the schoolwork is important to the newest member of the Boston Bruins and he intends to study and hit the books on his road trips, and also intends to take classes in the summertime to still graduate on time next season.

“I’m planning on finishing the semester academically. I want to finish the semester academically,” said Donato, after Monday’s morning skate at Warrior Ice Arena prior to last night’s debut vs. Columbus. “Obviously it’s going to be something that’s difficult, but for me it was a dream to graduate from Harvard. I’m putting that off a little bit, but I need to be able to finish this semester in order to have that opportunity, and not put it off for another couple of years. I want to finish out the semester.”

Donato is also still living in the Harvard dorms while “moonlighting” as an NHL hockey player for the rest of the season, but that isn’t all so uncommon among some of the college players that leave school early. Charlie McAvoy was similarly living in the Boston University dorms last spring through Boston’s playoff run, and didn’t clear out of his college living situation until after the Black and Gold had been eliminated by the Ottawa Senators last April.

Missing practices on an NHL schedule is certainly a new one with, Donato, however, and takes the student-athlete concept to a whole new level for somebody that's already turned pro. One has to expect this was one of the things being discussed in full when the Donato family, Ryan's agent and the Bruins discussed his contract terms over the weekend before coming to an agreement.

Along with Donato, who is scheduled to fly into St. Louis and play against the Blues on Wednesday night, Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, Charlie McAvoy, David Backes, Jake DeBrusk, Rick Nash and Torey Krug were all missing from the ice at Tuesday’s team practice ahead of a four game road trip against Western Conference opponents.