Boston Bruins fans got a scare Sunday when star forward Brad Marchand was missing from practice as Karson Kuhlman took his place in practice, according to NHL.com’s Matt Kalman, making many wonder if Marchand would be made available for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals, which start on Monday.
“He had a maintenance day today, so that’s all, he’ll be ready to go tomorrow,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said about Marchand.
There was some concern that Marchand, who leads the Bruins with 18 points (seven goals and 11 assists) in 17 games, injured his left hand in Thursday’s scrimmage when he bumped into Connor Clifton and returned to the bench at one point, favoring his left hand. However, he continued playing in the scrimmage.
“I’ve been trying to get out of practice every day this week,” Marchand joked. “It’s just been dragging out here, so we’re excited for it to start tomorrow and it should be fun.”
Kalman also writes that David Krejci, who has been out with a fever the last couple of days, practiced today and is expected to be ready for Monday’s game as well.
- St. Louis Blues defenseman Vince Dunn, who has missed three straight games after taking a puck to the head during Game 3 against the San Jose Sharks, has traveled with the team to Boston and skated with the team Sunday, wearing a plastic face guard around his entire face, according to Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He is still considered doubtful for Game 1 as he practiced with the extra defensemen. Head coach Craig Berube said there is a chance that Dunn returns at some point in the playoffs. “That was the best he’s looked, which is a good sign. He’s pretty close,” Berube said.
- Thomas also posts that St. Louis Blues forward Robert Thomas (undisclosed injury) did not skate among the regulars during practice on Sunday. He came out later in practice and worked on his own. However, Berube said that Thomas was “a go” for Monday and is expected to play in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Robby Fabbri filled in for Thomas on the third line.
- In an in-depth piece on Boston Bruins 42-year-old defenseman Zdeno Chara, the Boston Globe’s Christopher L. Gasper writes that Chara expressed an interest to play until he’s 45, a claim very similar to the ones made by fellow New England athlete Tom Brady with the New England Patriots. “Obviously, I’m signed for next year. I’m planning to play. I want to compete and still play. I’ll be 43. I’m not, obviously, that far away. I’m taking it one year at a time,” Chara said. “I think you have to respect that things could change. It could go from my end, ‘Hey, I just don’t feel like it.’ Or it could be, ‘Hey, I still love it. I still have so much passion for it. I want to keep going.’ But I want to play until I can still be contributing to the game and still be effective. At the same time, you’ve got to realize that when there is a time there is a time. At this point, I’m still hungry. I still love the game. I have so much passion for it.”