The Boston Bruins have seen their blue line ravaged by injury this season, and though that doesn’t really appear to be ending, they at least got some good news today. Charlie McAvoy has been officially activated from injured reserve, meaning his return will likely come at some point this weekend if not tonight. The team also moved Kevan Miller to IR while dealing with his throat injury, and announced that Connor Clifton will be returned to the Providence Bruins. Gemel Smith will take Clifton’s roster spot after being claimed earlier today.
McAvoy has been dealing with a concussion and has missed the last 20 Bruins games, a huge blow to their team even had they not experienced other injuries. The 20-year old defenseman logs more than 20 minutes a night for Boston, playing in all situations and driving their offense from the back end. His six points in seven games amazingly is still good enough for eighth on the team and third among defensemen, despite not suiting up since October 18th. According to John Shannon of Sportsnet, McAvoy will test things out in warm-up to decide whether he can play tonight. At worst, he should get in for at least one of the Bruins’ back-to-back matchups this weekend.
Miller on the other hand will be out for some time after suffering larynx damage when blocking a John Tavares shot recently. Though not as important as McAvoy, his absence will still leave a big hole on the blue line. The Bruins are still sitting in fourth place in the Atlantic Division, but need to start moving in the right direction if they’re to challenge the Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs for the division crown—not to mention the Buffalo Sabres who currently sit ahead of them for a divisional playoff spot.