Bruins

Bruins

WILMINGTON, Mass. – While it might seem a little excessive for a reported case of the flu, the Bruins have apparently placed Joe Morrow on injured reserve and called up longtime P-Bruins defenseman Tommy Cross to the NHL, according to the Bruins’ team web site.

Morrow missed Bruins practice on Tuesday at Ristuccia Arena with what Bruins coach Claude Julien termed a case of the flu, and said it was unknown whether or not he’d be on the traveling party this afternoon for the two-game road trip to Colorado and Arizona this week.

The right-handed shooting Zach Trotman had skated on the left side with Colin Miller during Tuesday’s practice, and it was clear the Bruins needed another left shot defenseman if Morrow wasn’t feeling well enough to make the long flight to Colorado.

Cross was named captain of the Providence Bruins this season, and actually had a strong training camp as the hard-hitting, tough stay-at-home defenseman he’s developed into during his five years in the B’s minor league system. The 2007 second round pick was a highly regarded potential puck-moving defenseman when he was drafted prior to his Boston College career, but a series of knee injuries negated some of his speed and puck-moving capabilities.

He’s never played a game in the NHL, but certainly paid his dues over the years while earning the admiration of Providence Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy among others.

But the 26-year-old Cross has turned into an outstanding leader, a tough customer and a 6-foot-3, 210-pounder that knows how handle himself in the defensive zone. The 22-year-old Morrow was a minus-3 with zero points and just two shots on net in 19:38 of ice time through the first three games of the season in Boston. He struggled with turnovers and decisions with the puck on his stick, but is part of the young D-men group the Bruins are preaching patience with in the early going.