BOSTON – Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron was on the ice, skating with his teammates this morning for the first time since suffering his third career concussion in the first period of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
|Bergeron skated before Boston's practice with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides. |
Bergeron has skated by himself with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides for the past three days, but this morning joined his teammates for nearly a full practice.
The forward left the ice prior to the battle drill portion of the practice, which ended the session.
“He’s been around the last few days and we knew he skated a couple of times,” forward Michael Ryder said. “And just to see him out there with us, that gives us that little boost and hopefully he comes back soon.”
While Bergeron’s appearance at practice was a boost for the Bruins, head coach Claude Julien couldn’t confirm the 25-year-old’s availability for tomorrow night’s game.
“We’re going through the protocol,” Julien said. “It’s just something that you can’t predict, how quickly, or how slow it’s going to be.”
Still, Bergeron’s teammates are hoping to have him back in the line-up as soon as possible.
“I know they don’t want to rush that and you have to wait until you’re one hundred percent, but he looked good out there today and it’s pretty nice for everyone to see him back,” said winger Nathan Horton.
Seguin practices on the power play
A few of the Bruins took to the ice prior to the start of the 11:00 a.m. practice to continue to work on the power play.
Included among the early group was rookie Tyler Seguin. The dynamic forward skated in his first career playoff contest in Game 1, recording a goal and an assist.
Today’s Julien's spoke about Seguin’s development.
“We want to make the power play work and it’s never a bad thing to have those guys go through it and if at one point you need him, you need him. And what I said yesterday was exactly what we wanted to do with Tyler,” said Julien.
“He’s a young player that we care about and want to make sure that we develop him properly. And that’s part of the decision we’ve made as an organization is not to rush him through anything.”
“We understand the quality of player we’ve got and… what he’s going to bring in the future. And those are part of the things we keep doing with him and we’ve done with him all year is make him participate in all those areas where he’s going to be hopefully a big factor for us in the future.”
First line silent in Game 1
Boston’s top line of wingers Horton and Milan Lucic centered by David Krejci was all but silent in Game 1.
The line combined for 40:57 of ice time and contributed eight shots to the score sheet.
“You have to contribute and you have to put points on the board and I think that’s what we want to do too, so when we don’t’ get it we get frustrated and we want to be better,” Horton said.
“We had a lot of chances and we didn’t get any in, but I think we had something to be a positive. We did have chances and hopefully we can continue that.”
The 1-0 series deficit isn’t an obstacle Boston can’t overcome, but they don’t want to find themselves in another 2-0 hole heading to Tampa Bay.
“It’s only one game but we definitely have some things we need to be better at, but we definitely know what to expect, they’re a hard working team,” said Horton. "We need to be better.”
While Horton said the Bolts were hard working, he wasn’t so sure if the same could be spoken of his own squad on Saturday.
“It’s one thing that can’t happen,” he said of being outworked by the opponent. “We can’t let it happen again, that’s for sure."