BOSTON, MA - A great sight this morning, as alternate captain Patrice Bergeron joined six other Bruins on the ice for a morning skate at TD Garden.
Though no timetable has been set for Bergeron's recovery, to see him back skating again, for the first time with his teammates, since suffering what was deemed a moderate concussion in the second period of the Bruins' game on April 2 in Ottawa.
Bergeron has missed four games since the injury.
"Absolutely, it’s a sign that he’s going in the right direction," Coach Julien told media pregame, on seeing Bergeron back skating.
The centerman skated with Adam McQuaid, last night's healthy scratches Wade Redden, Aaron Johnson, Jay Pandolfo and Kaspars Daugavins - all donning their black jerseys - along with goaltender Tuukka Rask. The other Bruins stayed off the ice, as they face the second game of their back-to-back tonight against the New York Islanders, after traveling from New Jersey following the 5-4 win.
Towards the end of the skate, Bergeron battled for pucks in the corner, practicing his puck control, with Redden and the defensemen taking turns providing the pressure.
"Yeah, absolutely. Obviously we know he’s a tough guy and just to see him out on the ice and in the locker room definitely brings up the spirits in here," said Tyler Seguin, on there being a boost from the B's on seeing Bergeron around.
"He’s a big huge part of our team and a huge leader and still had things to say to us after watching the game last night so definitely good to see him."
"First and foremost, you're happy for them," said Andrew Ference, on having Bergeron back around the team as of late, and Adam McQuaid haven't spent the past week with the team after recovering from a shoulder strain that has kept him out of the lineup since March 22.
"Everybody's gone through injuries and it's extremely frustrating, you want to be part of the mix. So you're happy for them, seeing a smile on their face, knowing they're getting better. They're big parts of our team, so it's all positives for sure."
McQuaid Readies for Return
Welcome news on the injury front for Adam McQuaid as well, as he is medically cleared, and spoke to media for the first time since his injury this morning following a brief skate.
"I'm feeling good, cleared, so I guess at this point it's just coach's decision," said McQuaid. "Hopefully, I get in soon."
The defenseman likely won't have to wait too long, however, as Coach Julien said McQuaid is "ready" and that "there’s a good possibility that he’ll be in the lineup tonight."
"I'm looking forward to it, especially with the shortened season," said McQuaid, on the possibility of getting back in the lineup. "Missing any time is tough. I'm just looking forward to getting back out there, competing."
"It's just a process to get the range of motion back and then to get on the ice and kind of get comfortable out there again."
"Obviously it's not the situation that you want to be in, but I've tried to kind of change my outlook on things," added McQuaid, on dealing with being out for an extended period of time.
"I want to try and play a hard game, and with that, sometimes comes injuries. I've tried to stay positive and just work hard to get myself ready."
"That's all I can do, I can't change the situations. You try and take the positives out of negative situations."
With physicality such an important aspect of McQuaid's game, though he hasn't been tested in game situations, he feels good about the battling his teammates have given him in practice.
"Tested it out as best as I can with my teammates and everything felt good. I'm not concerned about that."
The physicality in McQuaid's game is something that Ference said would definitely add to the Bruins' game, but he made sure to note that heavy type of game that defines the B's should be coming from every member of the Black & Gold - not just No. 54.
"We expect that from everybody. It's obviously a big part of his game, some guys on our team can do a lot more damage with their bodies than other guys, as far as that constant wear and tear on a team," said Ference.
"So it's great, but we can't be one of those teams that you have 15 guys looking at five to provide a physical presence. It's got to be through and through. Well, I guess our goalies get off the hook, but 18 guys."
"Really, like I said, some guys have it more in the repertoire to really wear guys down, but it has to be something that everybody is willing to do."
No Update Yet on Marchand
Brad Marchand received an elbow from Anton Volcheckov in the second period of Wednesday night's game in New Jersey, which landed the Devils' defenseman a five-minute penalty and a game misconduct, and the B's winger did not return to the game.
There was no update following the game or Thursday during Coach Julien's pregame media availability, as he said Marchand was "being re-assessed by our doctor this morning, so we will have something today."
The latest update will be posted as soon as its available on Twitter @NHLBruins and on BostonBruins.com.
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