BOSTON - Captain Zdeno Chara returned to practice on Friday at Warrior Ice Arena, after missing Thursday night's game due to illness.
Chara had been under the weather since the beginning of the week.
"I had a good practice with the team, and I'm feeling much better, obviously, than I did [on Thursday], or even two or three days ago," Chara said following practice. "It's very unfortunate. These things come, and as much as you want to control them and be well and be playing and practicing, it's something that is hard to explain - I just felt so fatigued and so out of it, that you probably would do more harm to yourself, and obviously, to the team, than good."
"So we decided with the training staff that it would probably be best to stay away and not to risk any possible injuries or any more spread through the locker room," said Chara. "It's been good, and a lot of progress [on Thursday] and today [on Friday], so I should be good to go for [Saturday]."
The Bruins next face the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday at TD Garden (1:00 p.m. EST - NESN, 98.5 The Sports Hub). They picked up their first win under Interim Head Coach Bruce Cassidy on Thursday night, with a 6-3 win over San Jose, and the Captain is eager to join his teammates.
Since Chara was ill all week, Friday marked the first opportunity for him to speak with media about the Bruins' coaching change.
"Well, obviously, we - including myself - we felt bad for him," Chara said, of Claude Julien's departure. "It's a tough situation where you see a good coach, good person, being let go because the results that we put up were not good enough. So, we all took responsibility for that, yeah."
"He's obviously a coach who's done a tremendous job in Boston over the course of his time here. He was a big part of us wining in 2011 and that will never be forgotten. Wherever he goes, he's going to be successful, and we all wish him well."
Chara has been through coaching changes before, with a string of them coming during his first years in the NHL with the New York Islanders. He was asked by a reporter what it's like at his age to experience this change.
"It doesn't matter what age you are at - it happened to me when I was 19, 20, 21 years old with the Islanders. We changed coaches every year," said Chara. "It happened with Ottawa, my first year here in Boston, so these are obviously part of the kind of darker side of the sport business. You have to be professional, you have to be focused on your job and do your job and do it better."
"These things you can control only by playing better and having better results. If the results are not there, obviously, you feel bad for coaches being let go for that."
Chara was asked by a reporter if he has noticed differences in the coaching styles of Julien and Cassidy.
"Well, they are different people. You're going to probably get some tweaks and some things both people like and probably put more focus, whether it's a practice or off the ice sessions or meetings, so every coach has a little bit of different things he likes to do," said Chara. "Again, it's our job to be ready for whatever the changes or tweaks could be and adjust to it and be ready."
"My job is to give my 100 percent every practice, every day, every game, play my way and do the best I can do."
Video: Chara returns to practice as Bruins get back to work