Boston -- The Bruins held their game day skate Saturday morning in preparation for their Northeast Division tilt with the Ottawa Senators at TD Garden (7 p.m. ET), and there was some more good news on the injury front.
Center David Krejci, who suffered a moderate concussion a week ago in the 2-1 shootout loss to the St. Louis Blues, skated for the first time since that game prior to the team taking the ice. Krejci was joined by winger Marco Sturm but Marc Savard was not skating as he has for the past week. Meanwhile, Johnny Boychuk took another huge step to his return which could be next weekend, as he skated with the team for the first time since breaking his forearm on Oct. 23.
Bruins coach Claude Julien was pleased with the progress of Boychuk and Krejci, but he and the Bruins won’t get ahead of themselves.
“Both are progressing well,” Julien said after the skate. “David started his exertion test yesterday, as we mentioned. He got on the bike and felt good enough to get on the ice and skate a little bit today. I guess that result we’ll get later on, and as the day progresses we’ll know whether he feels good enough and see tomorrow. So those are things that he’s going through, and so far everything is going in the right direction with him.
"Johnny is the same thing. He started skating with us today, getting some shots, so he’s progressing well. I guess these next few days will determine how close he is to starting to play again."
As for the game Saturday night, despite beating the Senators soundly in a 4-0 shutout at Ottawa on Oct. 30, Julien and the Bruins aren’t taking their division rivals lightly by any means.
“I think they’re a very different team than the last time we played them,” Julien said of tonight’s opponent. “Obviously, it was tough game against Vancouver last game, but after our game they started playing some really decent hockey. They played well, they played with a lot of confidence, so if anything, I’m anticipating a really good game tonight and a team that usually comes into this building and plays fairly well. We’re in no position to even think about getting comfortable against this team.”
Here is what the Bruins lineup should look like tonight with Tim Thomas getting the nod between the pipes looking for his ninth straight win: