According to a statement released by Boston Bruins on Wednesday evening, General Manager Peter Chiarelli reports that the defenseman "sustained a fracture to the 4th metacarpal of his right hand (ring finger) and dislocated his 4th metacarpal phlangeal joint...and is expected to miss approximately 4-6 weeks."
"I just got it solid on the back of the hand, it was sore," said Stuart as he explained the injury. "We took x-rays after Thursday’s [December 2, 2010 vs. TB] game and they were negative, so we just decided to see how it felt and look at it in a couple days.
"I mean we taped it up for Toronto and it wasn’t feeling good and I actually planned on just getting x-rays again after the game on Tuesday, but I think my third shift, all I did was make a pass and the thing just caved in. It was just hanging on by a thin thread, I think."
In response to the potential loss to Stuart, the B's recalled Steve Kampfer on an emergency basis from Providence.
He'll make his NHL debut tonight versus the Islanders.
"You’ve got to let a player play within his strengths," said Julien of Kampfer. "He’s a good puck moving defenseman and we saw that in training camp.
"He went down and got some experience with the American League team. He’s still moving the puck well as you can see with his stats, he’s producing.
"He’s a plus player and he’s had a good start to the year, so it merits being called up," said Coach Julien.
"Good defense leads to good offense," said Kampfer after morning skate. "That's what I've always tried to [base] my game on.
"If you play solid defensively, then the points will come.
"I think that's something I've tried to do all year is make sure that I am taking care of my defensive zone first and then joining the rush and I've just been fortunate that it's been working out for me."
But the loss of Stuart stings. The big blueliner had been to 52 games in 2009-10 and had hoped to have a healthy 2010-11 campaign.
"Yeah, the biggest thing going into this season was to stay healthy and it’s very, very disappointing, but what are you going to do? " asked Stuart. "You've just got to try and stay positive.
"I went through this last year, so, you know, I’m a veteran with this now, so I’m just going to work hard and try and get back as soon as I can."
In the meantime, Stuart hopes to return to skating in a few days.
"I’d like to get on as soon as I can," said Stuart. "The bright side is this time I don’t have a hole in my hand, so I can get on the ice and start sweating."