The NHL's Olympic break officially starts after the completion of play on Saturday. But the 2014 Sochi Olympics are already having an effect on the Boston Bruins.
The Bruins visit the St. Louis Blues on Thursday in their next-to-last game before the break. However, they'll take the ice at Scottrade Center without captain Zdeno Chara, who left early for Sochi in order to carry the flag for Slovakia in the opening ceremony on Friday.
"This was made as a group and that was the only way I would accept it," Chara said of the decision to let him leave early, "so I really appreciate it again, and it means a lot to me."
Here's a look at all of the action on a busy Thursday: