WILMINGTON, Mass. - Chris Kelly was back practicing with the Bruins on Wednesday morning at Ristuccia Arena.
The alternate captain missed the past two games with an undisclosed injury. It was his first time back skating with the team since he sustained the injury in Columbus on November 21.
When asked about the injury, Kelly could confirm it wasn't related to his back (a herniated disc in his lower back kept him out of the 2014 postseason and caused him to have offseason back surgery), or his head.
"I think we thought [it was] better to be on the cautious side of things," Kelly said following practice. "It was exactly kind of how we thought it would be. And it felt good today, and we'll see how it feels again [on Thursday]."
When pressed about what he 'thought' the injury was, Kelly jested, "I thought it was 'hurt feelings,'" before designating it as "upper-body."
"He was only light contact, so I'll see how our medical staff evaluates him here in the next few days and we'll take it day-by-day," said Head Coach Claude Julien.
With Kelly back, David Krejci was the lone Bruins forward missing from Wednesday's practice.
BOSTON - There was one message that the Bruins heard loud and clear from their head coach for Monday night's tilt with the Pittsburgh Penguins at TD Garden.
Drive the net. Drive the net. Drive the net.
"You just have to battle more, throw pucks to the net - you have to sacrifice more," Reilly Smith said prior to the matchup. "That's definitely the biggest factor we're focusing on."
It could be solace for the Bruins that they played what they preached, and picked up a point. But they unfortunately came out on the losing end, falling 3-2 to the Pens with Evgeni Malkin providing the dagger 32 seconds into overtime.
"It was a hard fought game, especially in front of the net," Tuukka Rask said postgame. He stopped 30 of 33 shots between the pipes. "We just fell short in the overtime, but a pretty good hockey game."
"It reminded me a little of playoff hockey there at times because it was hard fought around the creases," Rask added. "And it’s a bounce here, it’s a mistake here and there that ends up deciding the game and we fell short, so it’s disappointing but at least we got the point. I guess we’ve got to take the positive out of it."
BOSTON - David Pastrnak has waited for the opportunity to suit up in his first NHL game with Boston, and that chance may come on Monday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Pastrnak was recalled on Monday morning, and joined the team on the ice for pregame skate.
Head Coach Claude Julien deemed Pastrnak a game-time decision, as the Bruins have question marks with their lineup. While David Krejci and Chris Kelly remain out due to undisclosed injuries, Brad Marchand could be ready to return from his own undisclosed injury.
Jordan Caron was also recalled with Pastrnak. The transactions reunited three P-Bruins who have played together on Providence's top line this season: Caron, Pastrnak and Alex Khokhlachev, who remains with Boston on an emergency basis.
"I'm happy I got this opportunity to come here and it's - I don't know if [I'll] play, but practicing with those guys and everything it's great, so I'm just trying to enjoy it," a smiling Pastrnak said from the locker room following pregame skate.
Pastrnak found out he was getting his first NHL recall on Sunday, when he was set to play in Providence's afternoon game at the Dunkin Donuts Center, before he was given the news.
BOSTON - The Bruins have game-time decisions on Monday night as they host the Pittsburgh Penguins at TD Garden.
The Bruins are capping off three games in four nights, after earning a 4-3 shootout win in Columbus on Friday night, before falling 2-0 to the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.
David Krejci remains sidelined by an undisclosed injury that will see him miss his third straight game and his ninth in the past 11 games. Chris Kelly is also out day-to-day with an undisclosed injury suffered during Friday night's game in Columbus.
Brad Marchand has missed three straight games with an undisclosed injury, but he was out on the ice for pregame skate on Monday morning, and is a game-time decision against the Penguins.
David Pastrnak and Jordan Caron were both recalled from the Providence Bruins and are available for the matchup. Pastrnak would be suiting up in his first NHL game. It would mark Caron's first NHL action of the season.
BOSTON - The Bruins' play on Saturday night at TD Garden against the Montreal Canadiens may not have warranted a win, but it also didn't necessarily merit a loss.
Playing with injuries up front to David Krejci, Brad Marchand and Chris Kelly, in addition the well-documented injuries on the back end, the Black and Gold worked hard. They didn't head into their second game of a back-to-back against the heated rival who's had their number already this season ready to fold.
In the end, the Canadiens took the 2-0 win and handed the Bruins their first loss in four games.
It wasn't a pretty game, but it also wasn't as ugly as Head Coach Claude Julien would have liked, around the front of the net.
"If there’s something we’re going to critique here it’s probably the fact that we didn’t put enough pucks on net and get some net-front presence," Julien told reporters postgame. "We tried in the third to rectify that and did a little bit better, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough and the goaltender was standing tall for them."
"We’re not scoring goals easily these days, so we’ve really got to get our noses dirty in front of the net and throw some pucks in areas where we can jump on those loose pucks."
The Bruins outshot Montreal 33-23, and had another 31 attempts that missed the mark or were blocked, and it takes plenty of bodies and jam around the net to beat Carey Price.
BostonBruins.com - Brad Marchand skated in Thursday's practice at TD Garden, but was not expected to travel with the team to Columbus later in the afternoon.
"He skated but I don’t think we’re going to bring him on the trip," Head Coach Claude Julien told reporters following practice. "We’re going to give him some more time. But he felt much better, so he’s doing better. Day-to-day."
Marchand has been deemed "day-to-day" since last Saturday's game (November 15) against Carolina, in which he didn't finish out the third period. Thursday marked his first lengthy skate of the week. He missed practices on Monday and Wednesday, and only took part in Tuesday's morning skate for a few minutes before leaving the ice and not suiting up against St. Louis. His situation is undisclosed.
Dougie Hamilton was also back at practice after missing Wednesday's skate with the flu.
Defenseman Zach Trotman joined the group after being recalled from Providence Thursday morning, in light of Wednesday's news that Adam McQuaid is out six to eight weeks with a broken thumb suffered against St. Louis on Tuesday night.
BostonBruins.com - The new ProShop powered by Reebok at TD Garden will officially open this Saturday, November 22 at 10:00 a.m. prior to the Bruins-Canadiens game. The ProShop serves as the official team store of the Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics.
On Thursday morning, Bruins Principal Charlie Jacobs was on hand for the ceremonial ribbon cutting, along with Bruins President Cam Neely, Boston Celtics Team President Rich Gotham and Reebok General Manager of the Sports Licensed Division John Warren.
"I am so happy to have this done, and I expect our fans will really enjoy this new experience," Jacobs said. "This ProShop is roughly twice the size of our old footprint down in North Station, and it should be a great experience for our event-goers, whether it's Celtics, Bruins or a concert."
Following practice, Head Coach Claude Julien said that Hamilton missed the skate due to the flu, while Brad Marchand remains day-to-day.
Marchand did not play in Tuesday night's 2-0 shutout of St. Louis. Earlier on Tuesday, he had joined in the team's pregame skate briefly before leaving.
The winger's situation is undisclosed, though Julien has confirmed that it's not a head injury. Marchand also missed Monday's practice, and did not play in the second half of the third period in Saturday's game against Carolina for precautionary reasons.
The rest of the lines remained the same as Tuesday's game, with David Krejci in the mix. The center made his return to game action against the Blues after missing four games with an undisclosed injury.
BOSTON - The Bruins were prepared for a grind heading into Tuesday night's matchup against the St. Louis Blues, who came in winners of four straight and 10 of their past 11 games.
Both teams forecheck hard. Both teams play heavy along the boards. Both teams roll four lines. Both teams are backed by solid goaltending.
"They play hard. They don't give you much," Reilly Smith said pregame, teeing up the battle. "Probably won't be one of the prettiest matchups this year, but it's definitely going to be an important one, and we need those two points."
Through 60 minutes, the Black and Gold fought their way to a 2-0 win over one of the top teams in the Western Conference at TD Garden.
The Blues pulled goaltender Brian Elliott with more than three minutes left in regulation, but Rask and the Bruins stood firm.
BOSTON - Defenseman Adam McQuaid left Tuesday night's game against the St. Louis Blues in the second period, and did not return.
Bruins Head Coach Claude did not yet have an update on McQuaid following the game, and did not know the severity of the situation.
"I haven’t even – they just told me he wasn’t returning, and I don’t even bother asking at that point," Julien told reporters postgame from TD Garden, after the Bruins put up a 2-0 shutout of the Blues.
"I still have to see what it is, and even if I do go see, I don’t think I’ll get the total answer. [The trainers] have to have a look at him first and assess the whole thing."
McQuaid's final shift ended with 15:01 still left in the middle frame.
The Bruins had to finish out the game with five defensemen, and banded together for a solid defensive effort, backed by 33 saves from Tuukka Rask for his first shutout of the season.