Chara back in lineup vs. Flyers

As expected, the Bruins will have captain Zdeno Chara back in the lineup for Saturday’s afternoon tilt against the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia Flyers, according to media reports from Philadelphia. The 6-foot-9 defenseman had missed the previous two games -- both wins -- with what the team was calling a lower-body injury suffered in a collision with Blue Jackets forward Antoine Vermette during the Bruins' 5-3 victory last Saturday in Columbus.

Chara did skate with the team Wednesday morning prior to that night’s game against the Ottawa Senators, but he wasn’t deemed ready to play.

"He's obviously doing a lot better, but certainly not to the point where we want him in, but very optimistic that he'll be back pretty soon," coach Claude Julien told reporters Wednesday night in Ottawa.

The Bruins designated defeseman Steven Kampfer to Providence of the AHL on Friday, a good indication that Chara was going to be back in the lineup Saturday.

Chara, who has six goals and 13 assists on the season, is tied for the plus/minus lead among NHL defenseman at plus-19.