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Colin Miller expected to return for Bruins in Game 4

Defenseman missed past two games against Senators with lower-body injury

by Amalie Benjamin @AmalieBenjamin / NHL.com Staff Writer

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins defenseman Colin Miller is expected to return for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday (7:30 p.m. ET; USA, SN, TVA Sports, NESN).

The Bruins lost a defenseman in the first period in four consecutive games, starting with Torey Krug (upper body) and Brandon Carlo (lower body) in the final two games of the regular season. Miller (lower body) was injured in in Game 1 against the Senators, followed by Adam McQuaid (upper body) in Game 2.

The Bruins lost Game 3 4-3 in overtime and trail the best-of-7 series 2-1.

 

[RELATED: Complete Bruins vs. Senators series coverage]

 

"I'm ready to go," Miller said. "I feel good."

Miller is expected to take the place of Tommy Cross, who was called up from Providence of the American Hockey League. Cross had played three NHL games during the 2015-16 season before playing in Game 3.

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said he expects to pair Miller with John-Michael Liles. Miller was knocked out of Game 1 on a knee-to-knee hit by Ottawa defenseman Mark Borowiecki.

"Hopefully a bit of lift," Miller said when asked what his return would provide. "But we're not going to change much. The guys did a great job after the start [on Monday] I don't think we really gave up a whole lot. We've got to come out ready to play tonight. There's not really much else to say. It's a huge game and it'll be a turning point in the series, for sure."

Video: WSH@BOS: Miller finds loose puck, lights the lamp

Miller admitted he put pressure on himself to return as soon as possible but said he also needed to be patient. Rushing, he said, would not have helped anyone.

"Yeah. I mean, obviously it's the playoffs," Miller said. "You want to get out there and play as soon as you can. With that said, if you're going out there and you're hurt and you can't do much it's not really going to help. I think a couple times in this series we've had five defensemen and that's always hard for the guys. If you put them in that situation after just going out there quickly and not being able to play, that's not good either."

Boston has relied on remaining regulars Zdeno Chara and Kevan Miller on defense to work with rookies Cross and Charlie McAvoy, and veterans Joe Morrow and Liles.

"It's been well-documented, if you lose some players that are playing every night for you in any position, the guys that are regulars there, they're going to have to do a little bit more if you're going to be successful," Cassidy said. "And the guys coming in have to be able to do their share. That's kind of where we're at."

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