The Boston Bruins’ season so far has been defined by injuries, but they’ve mostly been doing a fine job of keeping their proverbial head above water.
After Thursday’s practice at Warrior Ice Arena, Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy delivered some updates, most of them positive, on a variety of players.
Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara are two of the Bruins’ biggest absences at the moment, but both took a pretty big step forward. According to Bruins.com’s Eric Russo, the two veterans worked out with skating and skills coach Kim Brandvold for about 50 minutes, doing a variety of activities.
“They’re skating and they’re getting closer to joining practice,” Cassidy said of Bergeron and Chara, via Bruins.com. “But again, there’s no timeline on exactly when. I suspect we’ll probably see them in practice next week, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself and speak for them.”
Bergeron is dealing with a rib and sternoclavicular injury, while Chara is rehabbing his left MCL.
Kevan Miller, who required surgery on his throat after a puck struck him there, also is progressing. While giving a medical update, Cassidy also added some news on the defenseman’s facial hair, as well.
“He’s practicing in a non-contact jersey, so he’s able to do that, so that’s good,” Cassidy said. “He’ll obviously have to get cleared for contact. He had a huge beard today, so I assume he’s wearing a neck guard under there … but it’s good to see him back on the ice. He’s had a couple of tough injuries so far. Doing well.”
Jake DeBrusk has been sidelined with what’s been described as an upper-body injury, but he has been contending with concussion symptoms. He visited specialists Tuesday, and Cassidy couldn’t offer much, although what he did share was positive.
“Less symptoms today, so going in the right direction,” Cassidy said.
Charlie McAvoy provided an update on himself after he took a high stick that cut him right underneath his eye in Tuesday’s win over the Arizona Coyotes. While the wound is visible, McAvoy — who already missed 20 games this season with a concussion — isn’t too concerned about it.
“I’m fine. Fortunate the other night, it obviously missed my eye,” McAvoy said. “The other one was really through my chest, not my head. I’m fine. I’m in good health. Can’t really catch a break right now, but nonetheless my spirits are high.”
Finally, Sean Kuraly was absent from practice Thursday due to a procedure on his nose. The center injured it Sunday while fighting Ottawa Senators defenseman Ben Harpur, although he did play in Tuesday’s game.
“Closed reduction I think they call it for his nose injury,” Cassidy said. “He had to stay off today…we’ll see how he feels in the morning. I suspect he’ll have to wear a cage for a little bit of time. That’s a call we’ll make (on Friday).”
The Bruins currently sit in fourth place in the Atlantic Division and own the first wild card spot. They’re within striking distance of the third-place Buffalo Sabres in the division, and they certainly will become more of a nuisance around the league as players get back into action.
Thumbnail photo via Eric Bolte/USA TODAY Sports