GLENDALE, Arizona – Kevan Miller had a scare after taking a Frank Vatrano blast off his right knee at Friday’s practice, but the veteran B’s blueliner declared himself fit and ready to play Saturday night against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena.
The 29-year-old Miller is scoreless in his first three games of the season, but they could ill afford to lose another lineup regular with Patrice Bergeron, David Backes and Noel Acciari already missing from the action. Essentially, he got a little “dead leg” right after the puck connected with the top of his knee, but it didn’t do any kind of lasting harm to the area despite him needing help getting off the ice.
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“It was just a good dinger initially. The first couple of minutes were tough and then after that, it wasn’t too bad,” said Miller. “I’m ready to go. I’ve had it before. It’s kind of a common injury for guys that take shots there, and then after a couple of minutes it goes away.”
Bergeron hasn’t been ruled out from Sunday night’s game in Vegas against the Golden Knights, but it makes little sense to play No. 37 when the Bruins have three off days prior to suiting up against the Vancouver Canucks Thursday night in Boston. Austin Czarnik will draw back into the lineup on Saturday vs. the Coyotes and a struggling Frank Vatrano will be a healthy scratch after going scoreless in the first three games of the season.
Here are the Bruins projected line combos and D-pairings vs. the Coyotes based on pregame warm-ups: