After missing the last eight games with a lower-body injury, Dave Bolland is ready to get back at it.
“I’m really happy,” the Chicago center said prior to Wednesday’s Game 1 against Detroit. “It’s been two-and-a-half weeks, so I’m glad to get back on the ice.”
Bolland last played on Apr. 23 — a 3-1 loss to Vancouver — and missed all of Chicago’s opening-round series win against Minnesota.
The 26-year-old was replaced on Chicago’s second line by veteran Michal Handzus, who notched two points in five games against the Wild, averaging nearly 17 minutes a night.
As a result, it sounds as though Bolland will return in a third-line role with Bryan Bickell and Andrew Shaw.
“[We’ll be] in that shutdown role,” Bolland said. “We’ve got to be aware of who’s on the ice and who we’re on with. It’ll be a big game.”
Bolland finished the regular season with 7G-7A-14PTS in just 35 games, but will be counted on for his playoff experience in this matchup against the Wings.
The gritty forward has 37 points in 49 career postseason appearances, scoring eight goals in 22 games en route to Chicago’s Stanley Cup championship in 2010.
It looks like the Boston Bruins will be without their captain again on Saturday night.
Head coach Claude Julien told members of the media that Zdeno Chara is considered doubtful for tonight’s game against the Montreal Canadiens.
Chara suffered an upper-body injury during the preseason and he’s already been forced to miss Boston’s season opening loss to the Jets.
Per CSN, Chara says he’s improving but he won’t return to the lineup until he’s as close to 100 percent as possible.
“Every area of the injury is improving,” said Chara. “Hopefully it’s not long before I’m free of any kind of discomfort. That’s what we’re doing right now…we’re being patient. For sure you don’t want to come back, and be half of what you are…and basically hurting yourself and the team. And you’re putting yourself in a position where you could be missing more time. At this time of the season, I think it’s important to be as close as you can be to 100 percent.”
Based on the number of defensive mistakes they committed on Thursday, the Bruins need Chara back as soon as possible:
Former NHL defenseman Mike Commodore may have been coached by Mike Babcock, but that doesn’t mean he’s a fan of Mike Babcock.
Commodore played in just 17 games for the Detroit Red Wings during the 2011-12 season and that was enough for him to muster up some pretty harsh feelings toward his old coach.
As Babcock’s new team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, were being embarrassed in Detroit on Friday, Commodore took to Twitter to show fans just how much he was enjoying his former coach’s struggles.
Things got especially interesting after Red Wings rookie Dylan Larkin scored just 20 seconds into the second period to give Detroit a 3-0 lead.
“3-0 nothin Babs you posing arrogant piece of (bleep),” said Commodore via his Twitter page. “Welcome back to the rink where everyone that met you hates you.”
Commodore wasn’t done there:
And there was much, much more.
To get a look at all of Commodore’s Babcock-bashing tweets, click here.