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Bruins notebook

Next injury to face: Chara’s nose is broken

By Brendan Hall
Globe Correspondent / April 7, 2010

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WILMINGTON — Like everything else in this here-we-go-again turbulence that is the 2009-10 Bruins, Monday night’s hard-earned point against the team with the league’s best record didn’t come without its thorns.

This time, captain Zdeno Chara is the party in question. Coach Claude Julien confirmed yesterday that the defenseman has a broken nose. Chara — the team’s leader in shots on goal (230), assists (35), and plus-minus (17) — got hit in the face with Alexander Semin’s stick early in the second period of Boston’s 3-2 overtime loss to Washington. The hit drew blood and sent Chara to the trainer’s room, but he quickly returned.

Semin, who set up Brooks Laich for the game-winner just 24 seconds into overtime to snap the Bruins’ four-game road win streak, was not penalized on the play.

Chara was not present for the team’s workout at Ristuccia Arena yesterday. Team officials could not confirm whether Chara, who was given the day off along with a handful of other Bruins, will need surgery on his nose. His return to the lineup seems imminent.

“He’s getting it fixed, but it should be no issue, though,’’ Julien said.

Still hurting
Dennis Seidenberg remains day to day, according to Julien, following the laceration of his left wrist by a Toronto player’s skate in Saturday’s 2-1 overtime win in Toronto. Seidenberg was one of the dozen or so players who dressed for yesterday’s light practice.

He said he still has trouble shooting and passing, and “we’ll see how it goes tomorrow’’ when the Bruins will practice as a full unit. He confirmed that he would be visiting a doctor later in the day.

Seidenberg, an efficient shot-blocker who has 2-7—9 totals in his 17 games since being acquired from Florida, ducked out early from Monday’s morning skate at the Verizon Center after feeling discomfort in the wrist. He returned to the ice for warm-ups but did not participate in line rushes and didn’t take any hard shots on net.

“It’s tough when you can’t pass and you can’t shoot — you can’t really play,’’ Seidenberg said. “It was kind of clear once I made a couple shaky passes, or shooting, or just putting pressure on the stick, it was going to be tough to play a game with that.’’

That smarts
Andrew Ference, snakebitten all season by a groin injury, was another one skating yesterday, but he shouldn’t be expected in the lineup for tomorrow night’s visit from Northeast Division leader Buffalo. The playoffs, should they come for the Bruins, might be a more reasonable timetable.

Which means more therapy, more hot tubs, more cold tubs, massages, anything to keep the swelling down.

The outspoken defenseman kidded, “I’d love to give you the graphic details of what’s going on down there, but . . .’’

This will mark the third straight season in which Ference has appeared in fewer than 60 regular-season games. Frustrating?

“Lots of guys have injuries. I’m not the only guy who’s missed time,’’ he said. “It’s just part of the game. If I was 20 years old and hadn’t been around, I’d probably be more frustrated.

“You have a little better mind-set about it when you’re older, because it’s not in your control. You deal with it, suck it up, and you get better. I’m not going to sit here and pout about it.’’

Don’t ask
Questions regarding the Bruins’ stellar play on the road (20-13-7) and their struggles in front of their home crowd have become almost as popular around the locker room as the ones about Dennis Wideman’s near-nightly adventures in the defensive zone.

“That’s probably the 20th time somebody’s asked me that, and I’ve got no answer,’’ groaned Tuukka Rask.

Julien feels the constant reminders in the locker room aren’t doing any good, either.

“I guess talking about it doesn’t help, honestly,’’ Julien said. “Inside that room, we need to stop talking about that stuff, and just really focus on what we need to do here. They hear these things, they see it, and it’s a constant reminder.

“And you look at the opportunities that we’ve missed, if guys had more squeeze out of their sticks, I’m sure we’d have had more goals, but maybe they need a little space, stop being reminded, just go out there and focus on what you have to do, and you hope that these things fall into place.’’

Men in black
Tim Thomas was the lone goaltender on the ice yesterday, along with 12 other Bruins who all donned black sweaters typically worn by defensemen. Shawn Thornton, out the last three games with an upper-body injury, skated, along with forwards Daniel Paille, Michael Ryder, Blake Wheeler, Brad Marchand, Steve Begin, Vladimir Sobotka, and Trent Whitfield. Seidenberg and Ference were joined by defensemen Adam McQuaid, Andrew Bodnarchuk, and Matt Hunwick.

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