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Pastrnak out at least two weeks for Bruins

Forward has left thumb surgery, expected to return this season @NHLdotcom

David Pastrnak will be out at least two weeks for the Boston Bruins after having surgery on his left thumb.

The 22-year-old forward was injured when he fell walking to his transportation after a sponsorship dinner Sunday. Pastrnak will be re-evaluated in two weeks but is expected to return this season.

"I met with David yesterday morning," Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said. "He was extremely upset, disappointed. He obviously feels like he let everybody down despite it being an accident and was apologetic. And it was heartfelt in trying to explain that accidents happen, and I said the same thing to him, that they do."

Pastrnak leads Boston and is tied for ninth in the NHL with 66 points (31 goals, 35 assists). The No. 25 pick in the 2014 NHL Draft has 269 points (125 goals, 144 assists) in 310 NHL games through five seasons, all with the Bruins.

His injury will not affect the Bruins approach prior to the NHL Trade Deadline on Feb. 25 at 3 p.m. ET, Sweeney said.

"I can look at it two ways," he said. "We are going to get a [heck] of a player back at some point in time. I think we've done a really good job; [center Patrice Bergeron] has missed 20 games, [defenseman Zdeno Chara] has missed 20 games, (defenseman) Charlie [McAvoy] has missed close to 30 games. Our guys have stepped up. ... So we're going to have to continue to play really tight defense, which we've done, and our goaltending's going to have to continue to be good.

"It doesn't change my approach at all. I've been having calls for a month now at least, if not longer, in terms of throughout the year. But specifically the last month trying to identify teams, and you can imagine the jockeying going on everywhere ... some teams don't know, they'll take it right to the deadline. So that may happen. We've been looking to do something, but if it doesn't happen it doesn't happen."

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy echoed what Sweeney said about having dealt with injuries all season.

"We went through some of these challenges earlier in the year ... we got through it," Cassidy said. "So someone else will have to step in. ... We don't expect any one player to deliver what [Pastrnak] has to this point or could going forward, but we'll look at different people in there that have had some level of success, see if they can fill some of the void. That's what's in front of us.

"We've relied on team defense, special teams, goaltending, more the defensive side of it for the most part this year to get through. We were hoping that when we got healthy we'd start scoring a little more. I think we did. So I think this team's used to playing tight games where when scoring hasn't been there, we still managed to win. ... someone's going to get those extra minutes and hopefully they're up for the challenge."

Boston (31-17-8) enters its game against the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SNE, SNO, SNP, TVAS, NESN, NBCSCH, NHL.TV) third in the Atlantic Division, one point behind the Toronto Maple Leafs and one ahead of the Montreal Canadiens. correspondent Matt Kalman contributed to this report

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