TORONTO, ON - For the fifth game this season, and the second time in three games, the Bruins were down a defenseman.
Dougie Hamilton went down the tunnel towards the end of the first period against the Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre, after a Bruins' power play, and did not return. The defenseman has a lower-body injury.
"He's going to fly back home tomorrow and he'll be evaluated by our doctors; lower-body injury," Head Coach Claude Julien told reporters following the Bruins' 5-2 win over the Leafs on Saturday night.
"We'll see what the outcome is there but, right now, it doesn't seem like he's going to be playing with us probably this coming week. It doesn't look good as far as - the diagnosis on him was he's probably done for at least a week."
Playing with five defensemen has unfortunately become a somewhat common occurrence for the Bruins' injured back end this season.
"It seems to be normal now. We've played so many games where we've dropped a guy; especially early on in the game," said blueliner Torey Krug.
"But the coaching staff is so confident in guys whether it's me or Millsy [Kevan Miller] or Bart [Matt Bartkowski], they step up and they throw us out there in key moments and they play big minutes for us."
Late in the third period, Miller - whose first NHL goal was the eventual game-winner - went into the boards after being hit from behind by Leafs defenseman Dion Phaneuf.
Miller skated off the ice and went down the tunnel to the locker room.
"Millsy had to leave and it's very minor," Julien told media postgame. "Shouldn't impact him in playing with us next game, but it was a close call."
Boston next heads to Calgary to face the Flames on Tuesday night, and continue their four-game road swing through Canada.
With Hamilton heading back to Boston, Julien said the team would probably make a decision on Monday whether they would be making a call-up from Providence.
"Right now, I'm more optimistic than pessimistic that Johnny [Boychuk] may be available and that will depend a lot on tomorrow [Monday]."
"We're going to practice in Calgary. If everything is good, there's a good chance Johnny will practice with us. If he practices with us and he feels good, then there's a real good chance he'll play with us on Tuesday."
"If not, then definitely, we'll need a call-up."