BRIGHTON, Mass. — Once again, both Charlie McAvoy and Torey Krug were absent from Saturday’s Bruins practice at Warrior Ice Arena. That would suggest both defensemen’s injuries could keep them out for a bit.

Krug is currently on injured reserve with an upper body injury, and isn’t expected back until after next week’s game against New Jersey at the earliest, so his absence wasn’t a surprise. But McAvoy's absence with an upper body injury rules him out for Sunday night’s rematch against the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden. It also calls into question how long he'll be out. Both defensemen got walloped in a costly pre-Christmas win over the Washington Capitals.

Head coach Bruce Cassidy confirmed that neither player was in the concussion protocol, and are both “day-to-day” right now.

“They were both in here today. They’re feeling better, but didn’t skate obviously so they won’t play [Sunday]. That’s not anything we didn’t expect. When we said day-to-day that probably meant a couple of games,” said Cassidy. “My guess is next week we’ll have a better idea once they’re on the ice. They both may skate [Sunday] or Monday at least get out there and see how they progress.”

In better news, forward Karson Kuhlman is back skating with no limitations at practice. He's coming back from a fractured right tibia, but hasn't been cleared to play in any games as of yet. Cassidy indicated both Kuhlman and Anton Blidh could both head to Providence once they're healthy enough to play, due to their lack of NHL experience.


That meant it was business as usual for the rest of the B’s. It's looking like David Backes might draw back in against the Sabres on Sunday night. Tuukka Rask will get the start in net against the Buffalo in the home-and-home match-up.

Here were the lines from Saturday's skate: