Report: Marc Savard could miss the season; Bruins deny everything

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for screamingsavard.jpgBruins forward Marc Savard certainly isn’t lacking intrigue. After being held off of the ice during the start of training camp due to lingering effects from post-concussion syndrome, worry grew about just what Savard’s condition actually was. After all, he came back seemingly early to rejoin the Bruins in the playoffs last season and now he’s being held from the ice.

According to a report on ESPN Boston’s website, Savard could end up missing the entire season.

Boston Bruins forward Marc Savard could miss the entire 2010-2011 season with post-concussion syndrome, according to a team source.

The source stressed that there are many unknowns at this point.

“It’s not a good situation,” the source said. “It’s complex. Not sure how this will play out.”

Yikes. As things go with situations like this, the Bruins were quick to make an announcement shooting down the report. Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli had this to say:

“As I stated on Friday, Marc Savard is suffering from symptoms related to post-concussion syndrome. He is under the care of our doctors. Any reports that suggest that there are any other issues regarding Marc, or him not playing for the Bruins this season, are completely inaccurate.

Also, as I have previously stated, when there is a change in Marc’s status, I will issue an update.”

Making things even more tense, Savard’s agent Larry Kelly also spoke out about this to TSN’s Bob McKenzie who tweeted Kelly’s thoughts.

Savard’s agent Larry Kelly: “No one is in a position at this point in time to make a statement of that nature. No one.”

Looking at this situation provides more drama and intrigue than the Bruins wanted. Of course, this is rich fodder for speculation on what’s going on. Does someone on the inside know something more about Savard’s condition? Are the Bruins are doing damage control in case they were going to make a deal during camp to help fill out the ranks to save the team’s scoring? Or is this just the case of yet another rumor gone awry based on an initial diagnosis? Your guesses are as good as ours.

With Savard out of the lineup indefinitely, however, the Bruins are set up now to give rookie Tyler Seguin an opportunity to win bigger minutes and a spot with the team. This also gives David Krejci the opportunity to prove himself worthy of being a #1 center as well. While some folks figure that any extended absence by Savard gives the Bruins salary relief, that’s not totally true as the Bruins were already clear to start the season as Marco Sturm will start the year on the LTIR thanks to off-season knee surgery.

Savard’s situation was worth watching in the first place after the summer of trade talk, now it’s a full-blown Boston soap opera as the already high interest in Savard’s health is escalated to hysterical proportion to see if he does, indeed, end up out for an extended time.

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    Canucks spoil Ducks’ home opener via shootout

    Adam Cracknell, Ryan Miller

    ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Ryan Miller and the Vancouver Canucks have already found a groove just three games into the regular season. The Anaheim Ducks are still looking for a way to get their offense going.

    Radim Vrbata and Alex Burrows scored in the shootout, and the Canucks spoiled Anaheim’s home opener with a 2-1 victory Monday night.

    Miller made 28 saves and Adam Cracknell scored in regulation for Vancouver, which beat the Ducks for just the third time in their last 12 meetings.

    Vancouver improved to 2-0 on the road in the young season, with Miller yielding just one goal in each game. That’s encouraging to the veteran, who played in only four games after Feb. 22 last season while dealing with a knee injury.

    “I’m just trying to go out there and battle and compete,” said Miller, who stopped a third-period redirection by Carl Hagelin with his mask. “That was my mindset coming off an injury. That’s what it really comes down to, getting back the focus early on. I didn’t play hockey for a while. The technical stuff I worked on this summer and I pay attention to in practice.”

    Even with twins Daniel and Henrik Sedin combining for just one shot, the Canucks won the new season’s first meeting between the Pacific Division’s top two teams last year. Anaheim won its third straight division title, while Vancouver finished a surprising second before losing in the opening round of the playoffs.

    Sami Vatanen scored and Frederik Andersen stopped 24 shots for the Ducks, who have scored just one goal while going winless in the first two games of a season that begins with Stanley Cup aspirations.

    Anaheim was shut out in San Jose on Saturday in its opener before returning to Honda Center for its first real game on home ice since Game 7 of the Western Conference finals, when Chicago advanced to win the Stanley Cup.

    Kevin Bieksa played nearly 24 1/2 minutes in his second game with the Ducks. Anaheim acquired the veteran defenseman from Vancouver last summer after he played 10 years with the Canucks, who drafted him in 2001. Bieksa was reunited with Ryan Kesler, the longtime Vancouver forward who moved to Anaheim before last season.

    “We fought back a lot better than we did in San Jose,” Bieksa said. “So we need to keep building on this in the rest of this homestand here. If we do that, we’re going to be all right.”

    After the Ducks failed to score on a power play during their first official taste of 3-on-3 overtime hockey, Vrbata and Burrows got stuttering, halting shots past Andersen, who stopped Burrows’ shot before watching it trickle under him.

    “I’ve done that move a few times against a few goalies, but I don’t think I’ve ever done it against Freddie,” Burrows said. “So I tried it, and I’m lucky it went in tonight. It hit his stick and trickled in.”

    Jakob Silfverberg scored in the shootout for the Ducks, who lost their home opener for just the second time in six seasons. Anaheim’s talented offensive players aren’t clicking so far, but nobody is panicking yet.

    “I think we’re doing things the right way now,” Vatanen said. “We battled hard. We got some good chances. The season is long, so we’re going the right way.”

    Both teams opened at a furious pace, with end-to-end chances throughout. After a scoreless first period, Vatanen got the Ducks’ first goal of the season when his long, low shot went through Mike Santorelli‘s screen.

    Cracknell evened it later in the period with a sharp-angled shot that somehow deflected off Andersen’s shoulder or stick and landed behind the goalie. The journeyman got his first regular-season NHL goal since April 4, 2013, and just the seventh of his 85-game NHL career.

    “Pretty fortunate goal on their part,” Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said.

    NOTES: A small group of vocal protesters gathered outside Honda Center to call for the suspension of Ducks D Clayton Stoner, who faces charges in Canada related to a 2013 grizzly bear hunt. … Cracknell hadn’t scored a goal in his last 49 regular-season games, although he got a postseason goal in 2014 for St. Louis.

    Coming Tuesday: Dan Boyle, $4.5M healthy scratch

    Brad Marchand, Dan Boyle

    Few things say “Oops, bad signing” quite like putting a really expensive player in street clothes (without an injury being involved).

    The Philadelphia Flyers set quite the high bar in that regard, but the New York Rangers can’t laugh too much. Not with Dan Boyle expected to be a healthy scratch against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday.

    The word from the Bergen Record is that Dylan McIlrath will draw into the Rangers lineup in Boyle’s space, although Kevin Klein will take over Boyle’s role on the power play.

    Let’s face the facts. At 39, Boyle may still boast some zip on offense, but maybe not enough to justify an everyday role.

    It’s not the first time the Rangers have decided to make the difficult, awkward season to phase a big name out as he approaches age 40.

    Even if it’s just a momentary situation, one cannot help but wonder if Boyle’s career is screeching to halt much like Martin St. Louis’ did in 2014-15 (though the latter’s decline was more sudden).

    On the bright side, it sounds like Boyle has a side job lined up with Faith No More.