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Boychuk & McQuaid are Day-to-Day

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
BOSTON, MA -- The B's returned to TD Garden ice on Friday afternoon but were without defensemen Johnny Boychuk and Adam McQuaid.

Johnny and Adam Absent
Boychuk, who suffered a mild knee sprain versus Pittsburgh on Tuesday, and McQuaid, who continues to work back from a cut above his eye he sustained on March 28, were discussed by Boston Head Coach Claude Julien.

"Boychuk is improving as predicted," said Julien. "He continues to be day-to-day.
"Same thing with McQuaid. He’s a day-to-day and they just decided they wanted to keep them off today."

Pressed for more info on McQuaid, Julien explained that during last night's game Adam "just wasn’t feeling well and our trainers were looking into it and our doctors.

"We’re being over cautious right now," added Julien. "This is a time of year when you can be and we want to be heading into the playoffs as healthy as can be.

"The trainer came up to me and said we’ll shut him down and I said you can shut him down if you want and they shut him down.

"That’s basically what it is."

B's Expect the Best Out of Buffalo
With a loss to Philadelphia on Thursday, the Sabres were officially eliminated from playoff contention, but Coach Julien said he expects Buffalo to come to Boston ready to play.

"I expect a good game," said Julien. "You know, when team’s like that get eliminated, you'd think they’re throwing in the towel. But the one thing you get  to do, you get the opportunity is play that last game and at least leave with a win.

"That’s as positive as it can get right now, other than doing it with the other way."

And Julien wouldn't want it any other way.

"I want good competition going into the playoffs," he said. "I don’t want us having any of those games that are easy and that create bad habits because of reasons that are out of our control.

"They always play us well and they play us strong and I expect it to be a good game tomorrow."

However, in light of the Bruins high energy rivalry with the Sabres this season, Julien said he does not expect too much in the way of extracurricular issues.

"No, you know you got to give them credit - I mean, their organization, their coaching staff they’re classy enough," said Julien. "I don’t believe they look at sending messages if you’re eliminated.

"What? You go after a team to try and take away their chances? I don’t think that’s it.

"It’s going to be a game played and the way it should be played. I don’t anticipate it anyways and I trust that my knowledge of [Buffalo] Head Coach Lindy [Ruff] and his crew is pretty accurate."

B's Back on Track
One thing that Julien does believe is that the Black & Gold are in a much better spot than they were two months ago.

"We’re in a lot better position," said Julien. "There’s still some guys recovering and we just talked about two of them [in Boychuk and McQuaid]. And Tuukka [Rask], as well. [Nathan] Horton being another one.

"We’re as good as we can be right now. I think we feel confident with the team that we have, and I think we like the way we’re playing right now.

"If you look back at last year and the playoffs, we got better as the playoffs progressed so we’re hoping that’s going to be the case this year."

No Update on Horton and Rask
Looking back, it seems somewhat remarkable that the Bruisn achieved the second seed in the Eastern Conference in the absence of Horton and Rask for significant portions of the season.

But writers looking for new information on the duo were disappointed on Friday.

"Nothing’s changed on Nathan," said Julien of the forward. "He just skated on his own a little bit, I don’t even think he skated today.

"Again, I think everybody would love to see him be back with us, but he’s not close to that yet."

Rask has made progress, but Julien said there was nothing imminent to report on the goaltender.

"He’s skating by his own and should hopefully be skating with the group sometimes next week," said Julien.
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