Ference misses Bruins practice

Wilmington, Mass. -- Defenseman Andrew Ference, who left Thursday’s game in the third period, didn’t practice Friday and according to head coach Claude Julien is day-to-day with a lower body injury. Also missing was captain Zdeno Chara, who was given a maintenance day to rest.

But there were positive signs on the health front as defenseman Johnny Boychuk skated for a third straight day and said he felt good after practice. Julien also expressed optimism regarding Boychuk who is recovering from a mild concussion.

“He’s had some good skates lately so I guess right now it’s waiting to hear from our doctors whether he’s cleared all those protocols that he has to go through and if he does, we’ll be ready to put him back in at some point,” Julien said after practice Friday.

If Ference is unable to go Saturday, expect Mike Mottau to be back in the lineup.

Julien hoping team is in playoff mode

For two periods (first and third) and overtime against the Devils, the Bruins turned their game up a notch. With this being the final full month of the regular season, Julien is hoping the playoff mindset has set in for his players as they try to bounce back from a rough February.

“You hope that it’s going to start happening and I’m hoping that [Thursday] was a good start to that,” Julien answered when asked if he felt his team had a playoff mindset yet. “I thought we played two good periods and a bit of a letdown in the second but we bounced back in the third on a tough team to play against. They’re a good team and they’ve been really successful on the road so we didn’t expect and easy game either. Our guys are getting into that mindset and I feel it around the dressing room that it’s heading in that direction.”