PHT Morning Skate: (Video) Young Bruins fan gets to fist-bump entire team

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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Liam Fitzgerald is an eight-year-old who has Down syndrome and was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at four. He battled with cancer for three and a half years and has beaten it. He’s also a big Adam McQuaid fan, to the point where Liam dressed up as him for Halloween in 2013. When McQuaid learned of him, the Bruins defenseman arranged for him and his family to be guests at a game in February. He was invited back on Tuesday and this was the result:

The Boston Globe recently did a feature on Liam.

Editor’s Note: Pro Hockey Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting an $18,000 Fantasy Hockey league for Friday night’s NHL games. It’s just $2 to join and first prize is $2,000. Starts Friday at 7:00 p.m. ET. Here’s the FanDuel link.

Flames head coach Bob Hartley thinks he’ll get the most out of Sean Monahan by putting him on the ice against the league’s best players. (Calgary Sun)

Japan isn’t regarded as a major hockey power, but 11-year-old Iguchi Aito is pretty impressive:

Here’s a list of what the top NHL head coaches reportedly make:

Keep in mind, it’s believed that Red Wings coach Mike Babcock is looking for $3 million annually.

Islanders coach Jack Capuano was very happy with how his team played against the Los Angeles Kings last night. (LA Kings Insider)

The Anaheim Ducks’ recent injury woes have present Jason LaBarbera with his latest opportunity to prove himself. (Orange County Register)

Krejci admits to playing hurt in Bruins’ win over the Oilers

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The Boston Bruins extended their win streak to four games with a 5-2 come from behind victory over the visiting Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.

However, the health of David Krejci appears to be front and center.

Krejci returned to the Bruins lineup after missing another two games with an undisclosed injury, which is believed to be lower body.

The 28-year-old picked up six minutes in penalties in the first period on Thursday and finished the night with an assist on Milan Lucic’s empty-netter.

“It’s a concern that it’s not the start to the season I would love to have, but it is what it is,” Krejci said post-game. “This is my first time that I’m actually battling with injuries in my career, so I got to get through it. It’s something new for me. But I’ve been working hard and felt pretty good today. I was good enough to play, so hopefully I’ll have the next few days be good days, and feel even better on Monday.”

Krejci, who finished with 16:16 in time on ice, finished the night winning 62 percent of his face-offs and two shots on goal in the win.

He left the game briefly in the third period when the injury began flaring up.

Krejci has missed five of the team’s first 15 games after initially suffering the injury during the preseason.

“At the end of the game it was getting a little sore, so I was just being smart,” he said. “The game was 4-2 so I know that we have a lot of guys that can do the job,” said Krejci, who is tied for second on the team with 10 points despite missing five games already this year. “So I was just playing smart and tried to keep the shifts short and I’m glad we got it done.”

Reilly Smith, Loui Eriksson, Carl Soderberg and Dougie Hamilton had the other Bruins’ goals while Tuukka Rask made 22 saves for his seventh win of the season.

Edmonton got out to an early 2-1 lead thanks to goals from Boyd Gordon and Mark Arcobello, but could not hang on.

“We had a critical mistake off the rush on the third one, and then they scored that third goal,” said Oilers coach Dallas Eakins. “It’s a bad decision, one that cost us, and then it actually led to the next one as well. That’s a hard one to frame.

“It goes to the mindset that every moment is critical. You’re in control of the game, everything is fine. Even when they scored the second one, I still felt we were in control. But our penalty kill there on the third one, with the big mistake, killed us.”

After winning four of five to close out October, the Oilers have now lost four straight.

Ben Scrivens made 18 saves in the loss.

Lucic was appearing his 500th career NHL game Thursday night. The Bruins 2006, second-round pick (50th overall) now has 124 goals and 307 points to go along with 722 penalty minutes all in Boston colors.

Video: Bruins’ Smith roofs a shot on Scrivens

Bruins’ forward Reilly Smith had a beauty of a goal late in the first period tying things at 1-1 late in the frame.

Oilers’ goaltender Ben Scrivens had no chance on the shot. The goal was Smith’s third of the season.

Bruins play it safe with Krejci

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The Boston Bruins would love to get David Krejci back, but they’re not going to rush him. If that means that he can’t play against the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday, then so be it.

“If he’s ready then I’d want him in the lineup. Why sit him out a game if he’s ready?” Head coach Claude Julien told CSNNE.com on Wednesday. “If he’s not then I guess the weekend would certainly help him because it’s more days. That’s what we’ll have to see here. I’m going to talk to our trainers tomorrow morning, and if there’s any doubt then he won’t be playing. But if he’s okay to play then I don’t want him watching tomorrow.”

To their credit, the Bruins are finding ways to win even with significant injuries to players like Krejci and Zdeno Chara.

Still, it’s not as if they’re blowing out opponents during a three-game winning streak with overtime wins against Buffalo and Florida (along with a two-goal win versus Ottawa).

As CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty notes, it’s obvious that Boston’s offense isn’t exactly buzzing without the 28-year-old.

It’s clear that the absence of Krejci is impacting to different forward lines: the Lucic-Kelly-Griffith line went without a single shot on net in Tuesday’s win over the Panthers, and the reconfigured third line wasn’t much of a factor either. His longtime left wing in Milan Lucic undoubtedly misses Krejci, but also understands that it’s not worth pushing it in early November.

Julien alluded to a schedule that indeed seems friendly to Krejci healing up. Following tonight’s match against Edmonton, the Bruins don’t play again until Monday (Nov. 10). That provides some useful flexibility, as they can either play him tonight (knowing that he doesn’t face a quick turnaround) or give him that extra rest until Monday.

Even with these injury issues bothering him to start the 2014-15 season, the Czech-born center has been productive when he manages to play; Krejci has nine points in as many games so far this season.

Video: Bruins honor Shawn Thornton

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Former Bruins enforcer Shawn Thornton is playing in his first game back at the TD Garden as a member of the Florida Panthers tonight.

During the first period, the Bruins payed tribute to Thornton, who spent seven seasons with Boston winning a Stanley Cup in 2011.

Thornton signed a two-year, $2.4 million contract with the Panthers in the summer.