Hello from TD Garden, where the Bruins ran through a half hour practice this morning. Missing from the session were Zdeno Chara, taking a rest day, and Adam McQuaid, recovering from the sprained neck he suffered Monday in Philadelphia. Stephen Kampfer, who suffered a knee injury while playing for the Providence Bruins on the last weekend of the regular season, skated with the team for the second straight day.
Updates from Bruins coach Claude Julien:
On McQuaid: “He’s definitely better. I know we’re still saying day to day but there’s improvement in him. We’re getting very optimistic that things are going to happen quicker rather than later so right now we’re just keeping our fingers crossed. He seems to be doing well and hopefully we’ll have better news in the next couple of days.”
On Kampfer: “Right now he just started yesterday for the first time and he felt good enough to skate with us today. We had no contact in our drills so it was a good skate for him. We’re moving forward as we’re being told by our medical staff and he’s looking better every day so we just have to stay with it but he’s not ready.”
Shane Hnidy stepped in on defense for McQuaid in Game 3, paired with Tomas Kaberle when he hit the ice, though he saw only 2 minutes 38 seconds of ice time.
“We never got in that position [Wednesday] night where we had a lot of penalties to kill and certain guys getting overtaxed,” said Julien, “but [Hnidy] was ready to go and still is ready to go. We definitely have confidence in him. We understand also the fact that he hasn’t played much this year so right now our guys that we had in our lineup were capable of sharing that ice time [Wednesday] night. Having him as the sixth defenseman is certainly something that we’re very comfortable with.”
Game 4 of the best-of-seven series is tomorrow at 8 p.m. TD Garden will host the Northeastern graduation tomorrow, so the teams won’t get a game-day skate at the Garden.
Julien believes his team is ready to take down the Flyers in Game 4, the same game where it started going sour for the B’s last season in their second-round series with Philadelphia, a 4-3 loss after a 3-0 start.
“i definitely think our team played a pretty solid game yesterday,” said Julien. “And limited their scoring chances by a lot compared to the game before. Our team, I felt, was in pretty good control for most of the game and that is something that is going to be important for tomorrow’s game as well. To finish off a team you need your best game of the series and that is what we are going to need tomorrow.”