Adam McQuaid out 6-8 weeks

BOSTON -- Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid suffered a broken right thumb and will miss the next six to eight weeks, the team announced Wednesday afternoon.

Early in the second period of Tuesday's 2-0 win against the St. Louis Blues at TD Garden, McQuaid blocked a shot by Kevin Shattenkirk. It was evident McQuaid was hurt on the play as he began to shake his hand in pain, but he remained on the ice for another minute while St. Louis had Boston hemmed in on its own end. When the Bruins finally cleared the puck, McQuaid went to the locker room and did not return.

Boston's blue line already has dealt with numerous injuries this season, including Zdeno Chara (knee), Torey Krug (finger), Kevan Miller (shoulder) and David Warsofsky (groin).

"It's tough," Krug said of McQuaid's injury. "I'm pretty close with Adam and I know how hard he works and how it's been frustrating going through all the injuries. He's going to work hard and he'll be ready to come back whenever he's ready. Hopefully, when he does he can stay healthy."

McQuaid had played in all 20 games for the Bruins this season and was averaging nearly 20 minutes of ice time per game.

"Awful," Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg said. "He had a tough injury last year, and to get that this year is not fun. He's very disappointed. He's been playing well, playing hard and he's just unlucky."

McQuaid has been injury-prone the last few seasons. His troubles began the summer after playing a career-high 72 games during the 2011-2012 season. McQuaid experienced numbness in his shoulder, arm, wrist and hand. Doctors found a blood clot near his collarbone and McQuaid needed to have surgery before the condition became life-threatening; two procedures later, he was fine.

Due to the NHL work stoppage, he was able to properly rehab and recover and was ready for the start of the lockout-shortened, 48-game season in January 2013. He played 32 regular-season games and scored the winning goal in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals to complete the sweep of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

During the 2013-14 season, McQuaid was limited to 30 games because of quad and ankle injuries. He was injured against the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 19, and after numerous setbacks, he finally had surgery on his right ankle in May.

"You feel bad, but at the same time you also respect the fact that he works hard to get right back into it, and he wants to get back as soon as possible," Julien said after the team's practice Wednesday. "Last year was a tough thing for him to go through."

McQuaid remained in Boston during the offseason to complete his rehab and worked with the Bruins' medical and training staffs in order to be 100 percent by the start of training camp. He accomplished that goal and had been playing well.

"You feel bad for a guy like that because he's hurt and you respect him a lot because of what he does to get back," Julien said. "Some players seem to be apt to more injuries than others, and sometimes you just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.

"He does a great job of doing a lot of things. He doesn't mind blocking shots, he doesn't mind throwing his weight around, doesn't mind dropping the gloves when he has to. He's a guy that will do whatever it takes to win hockey games, so you feel bad for a guy like that because you appreciate having a player like that in your lineup, and wish you had him more than just spurts here or there."

Fortunately for the Bruins, Miller was activated from IR on Tuesday afternoon but was a healthy scratch against St. Louis. With McQuaid out, Miller will be back in the lineup.