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David Krejci Traveling with Bruins to Ottawa; Tuukka Rask Takes Advantage of Rest

by Caryn Switaj / Boston Bruins

WILMINGTON, Mass. - With the Bruins jetting off for a three-game road trip to Ottawa and Florida, David Krejci will be making the trip with his teammates.

It marks the first time Krejci will be setting off on a road trip since sustaining his left knee injury on Feb. 20 in St. Louis.

Krejci practiced with the team on Wednesday at Ristuccia Arena, marking his second day skating with the group.

He first started skating on his own with Strength and Conditioning Coach John Whitesides on March 10. Krejci is just about four weeks into his recovery, and could be making a return as early as this weekend.

"He’s coming on the trip. I can’t tell you any more than that because really, nobody’s told me when he’s coming [back]," Head Coach Claude Julien said following Wednesday's practice. "I talked about, is he a possibility for the weekend? That could be a possibility, if I’m told he is, but right now, nothing has been said to me."

Krejci has missed 12 games in his recovery from the partial MCL tear in his left knee.

Pastrnak Absent

David Pastrnak was not on the ice for practice, and it was deemed just a "maintenance" day by Julien. With Pastrnak not skating, Milan Lucic, Ryan Spooner and Krejci practiced as a line.

Prior to practice, Brett Connolly also continued light skating for conditioning, as he waits for his right index finger to heal. Wednesday marked exactly two weeks since he sustained the injury during his second practice with the team. His timetable is six weeks.

Three Goalies Traveling

Goaltender Jeremy Smith was recalled on an emergency basis from the Providence Bruins on Tuesday and dressed as the backup against the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden, while Niklas Svedberg started. Rask had the night off, due to what was labeled "general soreness."

Smith previously served as Svedberg's backup in New Jersey on Feb. 27, when Rask was under the weather.

"We needed him here for Tuukka," said Julien, who disclosed that all three goalies would be traveling on the road trip.

Rask Happy for Rest

Rask had played 25 of the Bruins' last 27 games prior to Tuesday night's game against Buffalo. He played 18 straight games from Jan. 10 to Feb. 24, with rare stretches of days without games, and the NHL All-Star break mixed in. His workload has been heavy, to say the least.

The netminder had started both games of the back-to-back over the weekend in Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C. With the team having Monday off, and Rask getting a much-needed night off Tuesday, he was feeling much better after Wednesday's practice.

"I had a couple days off there, so [feel] refreshed," said Rask.

"You can just kind of watch the game and kind of relax. But I take advantage. I’ve played a lot of hockey, so I take advantage of it for sure."

The torrid month of March sees the Bruins play another set of three games in four nights this week, facing the Senators in Ottawa on Thursday, before a back-to-back in Sunrise and Tampa Bay on Saturday and Sunday.

"I’m not going to play every game, obviously. It wasn’t my start [on Tuesday], so I take the rest and get ready for the upcoming games because we have a lot of big games coming up," said Rask. "

"So, not feeling tired; it’s just a matter of getting rest and staying mentally and physically sharp and ready."

Practice Lineup March 18

Gold Jerseys: Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Reilly Smith

White: Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Ryan Spooner

Gray: Chris Kelly - Carl Soderberg - Loui Eriksson

Burgundy: Daniel Paille - Gregory Campbell - Max Talbot - Brian Ferlin

Zdeno Chara - Dougie Hamilton

Matt Bartkowski - Dennis Seidenberg

Torey Krug - Adam McQuaid

Goalies: Tuukka Rask, Niklas Svedberg, Jeremy Smith

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