ST LOUIS – Patrice Bergeron was on the ice for the morning skate at the Enterprise Center ahead of Saturday night’s Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final all he will play in the pivotal road game against the St. Louis Blues.
But the Bruins top-line center was skating gingerly and at one point was only shooting pucks with his upper body after appearing to tweak a lower-body issue while ripping one-timers at one end of the ice. It would stand to reason that some kind of lower-body issue has been bugging Bergeron in this series while he's gone scoreless in the first two games. Perhaps it has been an issue for much of the playoffs in which he's posted eight goals and 13 points in 19 games.
Bergeron didn't skate on Friday's in St. Louis with a "maintenance day" as coach Bruce Cassidy termed it and wasn't available to the media following the Game 2 loss sparking speculation he was receiving treatment for something postgame. Certainly, Bergeron has been more erratic in the face-off circle than usual in this playoff run and doesn’t appear to have the usual explosion in his skating game, but there’s no question he’s going to play through any physical issues that may be nagging him.
The B’s alternate captain spoke to the media following the Saturday morning skate and said he’s ready for the opportunity to regain momentum in the series with a big effort.
“I think we’ve been through that before, especially against Columbus,” said Bergeron, of the St. Louis physicality thrown at them in the series. “It doesn’t really bother us. We need to be more in control and execute the way we want to execute on plays.”
Otherwise, it was business as usual for a B’s team going with an optional skate, and John Moore readying to go into the lineup with Matt Grzelcyk (concussion) remaining behind in Boston and not close to jumping back into the lineup.
Here are the projected Bruins line combos and D-pairings vs. St. Louis in Game 3 based on Friday practice and Saturday morning skate:
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