After being injured by a high stick in the Boston Bruins‘ game against the Buffalo Sabres late last week and missing the game against the Toronto Maple Leafs for healing time, Daniel Paille is back on the ice for practice today and wearing merlot again. He’s been getting a lot of rest and feels better, but isn’t sure yet if he’ll be cleared to play on Wednesday. He has to consult with team doctors on that.
However, his fellow Merlot Line member Gregory Campbell took practice in a different color: yellow, the same one worn by second-liners Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin. When Brad Marchand left the Toronto game early with what looked like a pretty painful shoulder injury, Campbell stepped up and took Marchand’s place in the lineup for the rest of the game.
He did a good job of it, considering that he was winging it when he’s usually a center. Overall, he played a little more than 14 minutes on ice when he usually averages less than that, blocked a shot, took two shots, delivered two hits, did pretty well at the faceoff dot and was second only to Zdeno Chara for ice time on the penalty kill.
Basically, it’s amazing what Soupy can do. (I had to. The joke was calling out to me.) He’s still serving in the left-winger role at practice because Marchand is still missing, probably just to get a lot of rest out of an abundance of caution in this shortened season. However, coach Claude Julien said that he is doing well.
Another player missing from today’s practice is David Krejci, so Jay Pandolfo took his place today on the top line with Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton. In Krejci’s case, this is a maintenance day and not indicative of any injury.
For fans who have Boston’s lines pretty much memorized, today’s practice throws a huge wrench in the operations. With Shawn Thornton still out tending to his concussion, the Merlot Line features Jamie Tardif, Lane MacDermid and Paille. Then there are those shifts to the top and second line. The only line that looks somewhat intact is the third–Chris Bourque, Chris Kelly, Rich Peverley.
There is good news on the Thornton front, though: he is concussion symptom-free, did some biking and even did some skating. Who knows? Maybe he could go on the earlier end of his estimated time of return to the lineup! Right now he is very doubtful for Wednesday, though.
Also, on the defense side, all seven defensemen were present and accounted for.
Perhaps by Wednesday night’s tilt with the Montreal Canadiens, the Bruins lineup will start to look somewhat normal again.