Bruins defenseman Dougie Hamilton is out indefinitely with a suspected shoulder injury.
That’s the latest bit of bad news from Boston, where the desperate Bruins, now outside the playoff picture with just nine games remaining, are preparing to face Anaheim on Thursday.
Hamilton missed Sunday’s loss in Tampa Bay; he played just 13:11 Saturday against the Panthers in Sunrise. The 21-year-old has been a fixture on the Bruins’ blue line this season, with 10 goals and 32 assists in 72 games while averaging 21:20 in ice time.
Hamilton joins defenseman Kevan Miller (out for the season) on the injured list, leaving the B’s with a defense that may look something like this against the Ducks:
Zdeno Chara — Adam McQuaid
Torey Krug — Dennis Seidenberg
Matt Bartkowski — Zach Trotman
With the win, Boston has now won five straight and seven of its last nine and moves past the Washington Capitals for the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. The Bruins have a game in hand on the Caps.
Boston’s win coupled with Detroit’s loss in Philly leaves the Bruins just three points back of the Wings in the Atlantic Division. Detroit has one game in hand.
Pittsburgh played much of the game without both Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby.
Crosby was a late scratch from the lineup due to illness and replaced by Craig Adams following the pre-game skate.
Malkin took a hit from Chris Kelly on his first shift of the game and was shaken up. He left the game briefly, but returned to finish the first period. He did not return to start the second.
Johnston says "We think they might be able to play" Sunday.
With Saturday’s victory, Boston wins the season series taking two of three from Pittsburgh. The Penguins won the first meeting 3-2 in overtime on Nov. 24. The Bruins edged the Pens with a 3-2 overtime win on Jan. 7.