NEWARK - The banged-up Bruins will have some reinforcements for Tuesday evening's tilt with the New Jersey Devils. According to coach Bruce Cassidy, injured winger Jake DeBrusk and Brett Ritchie appear "ready to go" after making it through morning skate, while Patrice Bergeron has been termed a game-time decision.
Bergeron, who missed Saturday night's shootout loss to the Washington Capitals because of a lower-body injury, "felt a lot better today," per Cassidy, but will take part in warmups before determining if he can play.
"It'll be his call. I mean, he's been around a long time. He knows his body better than we do so we'll talk about it," Cassidy said when asked if the Bruins will consider sitting Bergeron during certain back-to-back situations. "Obviously, I wouldn't say that automatically we'll start doing that, but it's something we'll have to consider so that he's as healthy as possible going forward.
"But we talked about that this summer - we talked about it with a few of our players especially with the long playoff run last year - that we may have to look into that. It was kind of the first step with him, this one, and we'll see how it plays out."
If Bergeron is unable to play, Par Lindholm would remain in the lineup. With DeBrusk (missed five games, lower body) and Ritchie (missed five games, upper body) both set to return, Brendan Gaunce - recalled from Providence on Monday - will not suit up.
Video: Cassidy gives updates on Bergeron, DeBrusk, Ritchie
The Devils enter Tuesday's matchup fresh off of two straight victories and are 7-8-4 (18 points) on the season. New Jersey is paced by former Hart Trophy winner Taylor Hall, who has 17 points (2 goals, 15 assists) in 19 games this season. Kyle Palmieri leads the Devils with seven goals.
"They've got a skilled team," said Charlie McAvoy. "They're good at moving the puck and they play fast, they play hard, they forecheck hard. It's not going to be an easy game, they're going to come hard, they're going to make it difficult for us, so we've got to respect them.
"Off the rush they're good, they're good with counters and like I said, they play fast. So, for us it always starts in here and just making sure we're doing the right things and preparation is good.
"And then getting out there tonight, trying to possess the puck, trying to make plays and make sure we're sticking to our system."
New Jersey waived goalie Cory Schneider on Tuesday with the purpose of assigning him to Binghamton of the AHL. Mackenzie Blackwood (7-4-3, 2.79 goals against average, .904 save percentage) has taken over the reins as the Devils starting netminder and will get the nod against the Bruins.
Video: McAvoy chats before game against Devils
Tuesday's Morning Rushes
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - David Pastrnak
Jake DeBrusk - David Krejci - Brett Ritchie
Anders Bjork - Charlie Coyle - Danton Heinen
Joakim Nordstrom - Sean Kuraly - Chris Wagner
Zdeno Chara - Charlie McAvoy
Matt Grzelcyk - Brandon Carlo
Urho Vaakanainen - Connor Clifton
Video: Bergeron a game time decision against NJD