ST LOUIS – It remains to be seen if the Bruins will get more healthy reinforcements back for Sunday night’s Game 5 against the St. Louis Blues, but both Matt Grzelcyk (concussion) and Chris Wagner (right arm) were on the ice practicing with the rest of the Black and Gold at the Enterprise Center on Saturday afternoon. Grzelcyk was skating with the no-contact jersey on Saturday and still hasn’t been cleared to play ahead of Sunday’s do-or-die tilt, and Bruce Cassidy termed Wagner “doubtful” for the potentially penultimate game of the series.
It sounds like the hard-hitting Wagner might be a possibility, however, if the Bruins manage to push it to a Game 7 on Thursday night back in Boston.
“He hasn’t been medically cleared, so he’s still in a red [jersey],” said Cassidy of Grzelcyk, while clearly not ruling him out from potentially being cleared to play in Game 6. “For tomorrow [Wagner] is doubtful. I’ll put it there. I guess we could wake up in the morning and they could tell me he’s got a chance [to play in Game 6]. But I don’t have that information. So I doubt he’d play. Game 7 could be a possibility with the three extra days [to heal].”
Wagner, of course, has been out since blocking a Justin Faulk shot with his right arm in the waning moments of Game 3 in the Eastern Conference Final, and the initial expectation for the fourth liner was that he would be out for the duration of the postseason.
Grzelcyk skated without a no-contact jersey on Thursday night ahead of Game 5 at TD Garden, so one does wonder if the Bruins puck-moving D-man experienced some kind of setback over the days leading up to Sunday night’s do-or-die showdown. Either way, the Bruins miss his skating speed and his efficiency moving the puck against a heavy, aggressive St. Louis fore-check, and they could certainly use a hard-hitting player like Wagner in the lineup against the rough-around-the-edges Blues as well.
Here are the projected Bruins line combos and D-pairings vs. the Blues for Game 6 based on Saturday’s off-day practice at the Enterprise Center:
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