Although the Bruins currently find themselves on the outside looking in at a playoff spot, it’s not likely to change their plans regarding team captain Zdeno Chara, suggests Joe Haggerty of NBC Sports Boston. Even if they don’t climb their way back into the postseason picture, they’re still expected to attempt to re-sign the 40-year-old for another season and not make him available as a rental player by the trade deadline. Chara is still logging heavy minutes in Boston this season (averaging 23:28 per game) and while he’s slowing down, he still should be able to contribute for at least one more year beyond this one.
More from the Atlantic:
- The Sabres have given blueliners Nathan Beaulieu and Josh Gorges a clean bill of health as the team announced that both are ready to return to the lineup. Beaulieu will return to Buffalo’s lineup tonight after missing seven straight games with an upper-body injury. However, Gorges is expected to be a healthy scratch but could make his return to the lineup on Saturday.
- Canadiens winger Ales Hemsky skated for the first time since suffering a concussion, TVA Sports’ Renaud Lavoie reports (Twitter link). The veteran sustained the head injury back on October 20th in Anaheim. Hemsky did not get off to a strong start to the season before heading on injured reserve as he failed to record a point in seven games while getting into penalty trouble at times as well. He’s likely still a week or two away from getting the green light to return.
- Lightning center Cedric Paquette could return to the lineup from his upper-body injury on Sunday, notes Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times. He last played on October 17th and has an assist in six games so far this season. Tampa Bay hasn’t placed him on injured reserve so they won’t have to make a corresponding roster move when he gets the green light to return.
Ugh I forgot Hemsky was still in Montreal.
Doc, what is going on with Montreal? They have a better team than what we are seeing.
Habs are doing fine recently(6-3-0 over the last 9) and are actually showing a balanced scoring attack. Injuries are a concern with Drouin and Weber hurting and they lack the depth to cover either of those spots for more than a game or two. Price and Montoya hurting isn’t too big a concern because Lindgren is a great prospect and clearly NHL ready. Plus, Price needs a chance to get his game back on track. They’ve actually played very well and outplayed their opponents in most of their games, they’ve just been prone to really bad lapses such as having given up 2 goals in less than 12 seconds nearly a dozen times already.
How do you think the playoffs in the Atlantic shake out?
I didn’t want to believe in Tampa but man are they scary. I have them taking the division with some combo of Montreal, Boston, Toronto and Ottawa finishing 2nd, 3rd and taking a WC spot. It’s going to be an incredibly tight division race that I can realistically justify any of the teams making the playoffs.
Yeah I was thinking the same, and as a Bruins fan, Tampa coming out of the gate the way they did is pretty disappointing. I have those 4 fighting it out until the bitter end as well. It probably comes down to deadline additions, so that doesn’t bode well for the Bruins given their recent history at the deadline.
Thanks Doc. Once again you are a wealth of knowledge. It’s good to hear that another Original Team has turned it around. Again, thank you brother.
If Boston is out of the picture at the deadline they should move Chara for picks and then resign him in FA anyways.