SUNRISE, Florida – The Bruins were banged up physically by the end of their epic comeback over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night, and they will continue to be beset by injuries for the foreseeable future.
The Bruins called up scrappy bottom-6 forward Anton Blidh and depth D-man Paul Postma from Providence on an emergency basis on Thursday morning, and it’s expected both will be there to replace injured players in Boston’s lineup. Zdeno Chara, Torey Krug and Jake DeBrusk all exited in the third period of the 6-4 comeback win over the Carolina Hurricanes, and it appeared postgame as if all three had undergone X-Rays while walking around the bowels of PNC arena.
Chara tumbled into the corner boards awkwardly midway through the third period and appeared to be having trouble with his shoulder area before exiting the Bruins bench, and DeBrusk was hit hard against the side boards earlier in the game. The 21-year-old played through it for a time, but it was pretty clear he was feeling the residual effects of the hit before eventually exiting in the third. It’s unclear exactly what happened to Krug prior to his departure from the Carolina win.
There should be a more thorough update later on Thursday morning as the Bruins undertake their Thursday morning skate at the BB&T Center ahead of tonight’s road game against the Florida Panthers.
The 23-year-old Blidh has skated in 59 games with Providence this season and has posted nine goals and 13 assists for a career-high 22 points and a plus-9 rating after posting a goal and two points in 19 games for Boston last season. Postma has five assists in five games for the P-Bruins since getting shipped to Providence right around the NHL trade deadline after clearing waivers, but spent the rest of the season in Boston as a little-used reserve with a single point in 12 games played for the Black and Gold.
BOSTON – It looks like Patrice Bergeron made it through his Game 5 return without any pressing issues or lingering problems that should limit his availability for the last couple of potential games in the best-of-seven series with the Maple Leafs.
Bergeron topped 20 minutes of ice time in the 4-3 loss to the Maple Leafs in Saturday night’s Game 5 at TD Garden, and had six shots on net, 10 shot attempts, three hits and won 16-of-25 face-offs while being held without any points. There were times where No. 37 looked like he was playing through a little bit of pain, but the numbers certainly don’t back that up as he was still very strong even if he was less than 100 percent.
“I won’t project past Game 6. He made it through [the Game 5 loss] healthy and he finished the game,” said Bruce Cassidy on Saturday night following Game 5. “You always want to see how they are in the morning. I don’t anticipate there will be any issues going into Game 6. Of course, that could change, but that’s the way it is right now.”
Bruce Cassidy indicated after Saturday night’s loss that Bergeron, who has five assists and a plus-3 rating in four games vs. the Leafs, finished the game without issue, and further said at Sunday’s chat with the media that he wasn’t expecting health issues would cause any lineup changes for Monday night’s very important Game 6 in Toronto. Bergeron was also spotted at Warrior Ice Arena on Sunday afternoon and certainly looked no worse for the wear, so the B’s aren’t bracing for any last minute scratches in a heavy duty playoff game on Monday night at the Air Canada Centre.
“We’ll reassess on [Monday] morning when guys go back on the ice health-wise,” said Bruce Cassidy. “Sometimes they feel good today and then they get on the ice…I don’t anticipate much going on health-wise, but we went up to Toronto [earlier this week] and one game Bergeron didn’t play and then Grzelcyk in another one. So [a change in the lineup] could happen.”
That would indicate Bergeron came through Saturday night’s heavy workload without any further issues, and that perhaps he’s over the hump with whatever upper-body injury caused him to miss a game in the middle of the series. That’s a great sign with the Black and Gold in serious need of all hands on deck for another chance to eliminate the Maple Leafs on Monday night in Toronto.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while spring appears to finally be arriving in Boston.
*Some solid war stories from the NHL penalty box compiled by FOH (Friend of Haggs) Alex Prewitt at Sports Illustrated.
*Keeping an eye on the Tampa Bay Lightning, and rookie D-man Mikhail Sergachev is enjoying a strong playoff series for the Bolts as they advanced past the New Jersey Devils this weekend.
*Nazem Kadri definitely helped make a difference for the Maple Leafs in Game 5 at the Garden, and Toronto is going to need more of that if they’re going to force a Game 7.
*The Philadelphia Flyers are finally ratcheting up some drama with the Penguins in their first-round series.
*Good memories from FOH (Friend of Haggs) Dave Goucher out in Vegas as he talks about Gil Santos at the time of the New England sports legend’s passing this week.
*For something completely different: When you’re writing think pieces about Adam Sandler, it may be time to reevaluate things.