Boychuk has missed the last 10 games after fracturing his left forearm on Oct. 23, but he’s been skating and said he’s ready to play. Coach Claude Julien is being cautious with the blue-liner.
“It’s the same thing as [Wednesday], it will be a game-time decision,” Julien said.
After returning home early Thursday morning following a 3-2 victory over the New York Rangers, the Bruins did not conduct a game-day skate this morning. Only Boychuk and Marco Sturm (knee) were on the ice.
Because the Bruins have four games this week, the team’s practice schedule is limited, which doesn’t allow Boychuk a chance to participate in certain drills, including contact.
Julien said he’s not focused on the team’s schedule as a deciding factor on when Boychuk will return, rather it’s making sure he’s not limited due to the injury and the cast he’s wearing.
“It’s about limitations, and he was on the ice again this morning, going through the things we are concerned about,” Julien said. “It’s about that more than anything else. At some point he’ll [work] those kinks out, but right now our schedule is not helping us out with so many games. The team goes before the individual, and you want to give yourself the best possible chances of winning a hockey game. If we wait for the right opportunity to give him a practice, we may be waiting even longer.”
Boychuk said he thought he would be back playing on Wednesday, and he’s still not sure about tonight.
“If I play I’ll be ready,” he said. “Hopefully I get to play, but if not I’ll take a couple of more days to make sure it’s healed.
“I feel strong enough, but I haven’t really tested it, yet.”
During his absence, Boychuk’s fellow blue-liners have been playing well, but more importantly all six are healthy.
“Everybody has been doing a great job,” Boychuk said. “Since I’ve been out we’ve been doing really well. There have been a couple of games that didn’t go the way we wanted, but we’ve won the last couple of games, so it’s been great to see.”