The Boston Bruins received more bad news on Sunday as David Warsofsky will miss the next two-to-four weeks with a groin strain and David Krejci is day-to-day. Embedded in the latest injury updates though was a glimmer of hope.
Defenseman Torey Krug (finger) took part in Sunday’s practice and thinks returning on Monday is a possibility.
“Yeah, definitely,” Krug told the Bruins’ website. “It’s realistic, it’s something that we’ve just got to talk about and make sure I feel comfortable with it, the coaches feel comfortable, and it’s going to be a group decision.”
The Bruins could use all the help they can get as they’re also missing defensemen Kevan Miller and Zdeno Chara on top of Warsofsky. If Krug can’t play, then Matt Bartkowski might come out of the press box after four games as a healthy scratch.
“He dug himself a hole, and now he’s got to dig himself out of it,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said, per CSN New England. “You only get so many chances, right, where if you keep failing then you go back up to the press box. It’s all about attitude. I think Bart has had a good attitude in practice, and he’s been working hard. I don’t think he’s hanging his head. He’s still a good teammate in the dressing room.”
Amid all of the Bruins’ injury woes, they’ve still managed to win their last four games. They’ll try to make it five when they face New Jersey.
Zdeno Chara. Torey Krug. Kevan Miller.
And now, David Warsofsky.
That’s the full, updated list of injured Boston blueliners — the latest, Warsofsky, was announced on Friday as the team said he’d be out “a while” with an undisclosed ailment suffered during Thursday’s win over Edmonton.
The Krug-like Warsofsky (still Brough’s best headline ever, by a mile) drew into the Boston lineup on Oct. 30 and has played well, averaging 17:46 TOI in four games while notching his first point of the season against the Oilers.
With Warsofsky gone, Boston’s top six blueliners project to be Dougie Hamilton, Dennis Seidenberg, Adam McQuaid, Matt Bartkowski, Joe Morrow and Zach Trotman. If that is upsetting to B’s fans, don’t fret — the team is 5-1-0 in its last six and the defense is playing so well, some think now is the time to trade Chara. I am not one of those people, for the record.
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.
Brad Marchand scored at 3:37 of overtime as the Boston Bruins improved to 4-1-0 without captain Zdeno Chara in the lineup.
Patrice Bergeron had the other Bruins goal.
Jussi Jokinen had the lone Panthers goal.
Tuukka Rask made 18 saves in the win while Roberto Luongo stopped 23 shots in the loss.
Zdeno Chara doesn’t know when he’ll be back. He’s not ruling out surgery for his injured knee either.
“We’ll see,” Chara said, per CSN New England. “It’s always nice to be able to avoid surgeries. We’ll see how it goes, but [not having to undergo an operation immediately, and perhaps avoiding it altogether] was good news.”
He added: “I wish I could tell you exactly when I could return, but it’s such a slow process. Who knows when the date is going to be? You want to be playing, that’s for sure. You want to do your part rehabbing, and try to get back as soon as possible.”
The Bruins estimated that Chara would miss 4-6 weeks from the end of October.
Boston is 3-1-0 without the big defenseman.
Related: Rask surprised to learn Bruins have won five of seven