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Bergeron out next two games for Bruins, no timetable for return

Center has lower-body injury, won't travel to Montreal, Ottawa

by Amalie Benjamin @AmalieBenjamin / NHL.com Staff Writer

BOSTON -- Patrice Bergeron will not travel with the Boston Bruins for their games against the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, TSN2, RDS, NESN, NHL.TV) and the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday because of a lower-body injury. 

"Other than that, no timeline on it," coach Bruce Cassidy said Monday. "We just want to make sure when he's in the lineup he's not going to put himself at further risk. So the medical staff will stay on top of it and we'll go from there."

The 34-year-old center has been battling a recurring groin injury, which the Bruins have been trying to manage. Instead of getting surgery in the offseason, Bergeron opted for a platelet-rich plasma injection after the Stanley Cup Final and took training camp slowly before starting the season on time. 

Bergeron didn't play for the Bruins in games on Nov. 16 and 19 but returned to play against the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday and the Minnesota Wild on Saturday. He has not yet been ruled out for the NHL Thankgiving Showdown at home against the New York Rangers on Friday.

With Bergeron not on the ice for practice on Monday, David Krejci skated in his spot on the top line, alongside Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. 

"It's at the point where back-to-back or not, they feel he's better being off the ice," Cassidy said.

Bergeron has 24 points (eight goals, 16 assists) and is averaging 18:50 of ice time per game in 21 games this season. His teammates acknowledged that it's harder to win any game when he's not in the lineup. 

"I think [there's] a little more pressure defensively when [he's] out," Marchand said. "You realize how good he is at both ends of the rink, what he does to shut down other team's top lines. He's obviously a huge hole for our team to fill, but we just have to rely on the next guy in the lineup and collectively be really good."

Forward Brett Ritchie will also miss the games against the Canadiens and Senators. The Bruins recalled forwards Brendan Gaunce and Jack Studnicka from Providence. 

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