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Bruins lose Adam McQuaid to injury in overtime loss to Senators

04.15.17 at 7:42 pm ET
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Adam McQuaid was injured in the first period of Saturday's Game 2 loss to the Senators. (Marc DesRosiers/USA Today Sports)

Adam McQuaid was injured in the first period of Saturday’s Game 2 loss to the Senators. (Marc DesRosiers/USA Today Sports)

At this rate, the Bruins are going to run out of defensemen by Game 5.

The Bruins lost Torey Krug in the 81st game of the regular season. He has yet to return. The Bruins then lost Brandon Carlo in the 82nd game of the season. He’s still out of action. Colin Miller fell to a lower-body injury in Game 1 on Wednesday, and was not deemed ready to go for today’s Game 2 after a Friday practice that finished without Miller on the ice. And now, after just a few shifts in the first period of Saturday’s Game 2 meeting at the Canadian Tire Center, Adam McQuaid has made it four games and four injuries for the B’s battered defense.

Down the tunnel with six minutes left in the first period after seven shifts and 2:47 of ice-time, McQuaid’s injury (labeled an upper-body injury) immediately dropped the B’s, who were already dressing Joe Morrow for his first NHL game since Jan. 22, down to five defensemen.

And while they were able to survive his departure for a little while behind a massive uptick in minutes for Kevan Miller and Charlie McAvoy, the loss of the hard-hitting McQuaid ultimately showed the longer the game went on.

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Bad puck management from Bruins allows Sens to complete Game 2 comeback

04.15.17 at 7:08 pm ET
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The Senators overcame a 3-1 deficit to win Game 2. (Marc DesRosiers/USA Today Sports)

The Senators overcame a 3-1 deficit to win Game 2. (Marc DesRosiers/USA Today Sports)

The second period was where things almost fell apart for the Bruins in Game 1. But like they have in almost every game since Bruce Cassidy took over for Claude Julien in February, the Bruins adjusted and put forth what was probably their best period of a five-frame sample.

And they did it with yet another defensive injury, too.

But it was the third period where the Black and Gold allowed the Senators to take control of this game and ultimately paved the way for a 4-3 overtime final that will send this series back to Boston tied at 1-1.

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Bruins go for 2-0 series lead against Senators

04.15.17 at 2:29 pm ET
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The Bruins will look to grab a 2-0 series lead today in Ottawa. (Marc DesRosiers/USA TODAY Sports)

The Bruins will look to grab a 2-0 series lead today in Ottawa. (Marc DesRosiers/USA TODAY Sports)

The Bruins are running out of healthy bodies.

Without forward Noel Acciari and defensemen Brandon Carlo and Torey Krug for the start of this round one series against the Senators, top six center David Krejci was a late scratch from Game 1, and Colin Miller was injured in that game thanks to a knee-on-knee hit from Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki. And the former three will once again remain out of action for today’s Game 2, as will the latter duo.

“He’s unavailable,” Bruins interim head coach Bruce Cassidy said of Krejci following Friday’s skate in Ottawa. “He’ll be day-to-day. He wasn’t very good [Friday]. We were hoping he’d skate…didn’t happen. Not playing for four days is going to be difficult.”

Down Krejci, Ryan Spooner will take over the second line duties, with Drew Stafford and David Backes as his wings. It’s a line that desperately needs some production to their name, especially at five-on-five, as relying on the star-studded top line with Patrice Bergeron between Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak could only spell trouble for a Black and Gold that struggled to find the middle of the ice for the majority of Wednesday’s Game 1 win.

On the backend, Miller’s absence will plug Joe Morrow back into NHL action for the first time since Jan. 22. He last skated in any sort of game action back in late February during a three-game conditioning stint with the P-Bruins that included one goal and eight shots on goal. And Morrow, who had one assist in 17 regular season contests this past season, will begin his night on a third pairing with Kevan Miller, a talent that he has familiarity with dating back his first season in the B’s organization.

“In Providence when I had them both years ago they were a good, solid shutdown pair,” Cassidy, who coached the P-Bruins for five years before jumping up to the B’s staff this year, said of the Morrow-Miller pair. “Now, it was the American Hockey League, I’m dating myself by probably three years ago, but there was a comfort level there, so that’s probably how it would shape up.”

Still, the loss of Krejci and Miller — along with the known absences of Acciari, Carlo, and Krug — are significant for this team, if only because these players hardly missed any time this season. Among the regulars (everybody except Acciari), they missed just a combined seven games this season, six of which from Miller behind a January lower-body ailment.

Tuukka Rask gets the call in the Boston net. The 30-year-old Rask stopped 26-of-27 shots in his Game 1 victory, and enters play with stops on all but five of the last 167 shots thrown his way (a .970 save percentage) in his last seven games played.

Ottawa counters with Craig Anderson, who yielded two even-strength goals to the Bruins for the first time all season in Wednesday’s defeat in what finished as a 23-of-25 showing for the veteran netminder.

Since 2007, the Bruins have taken a 2-0 series lead in five of 16 playoff series, and have won all but one of those five series (2010’s unforgettable second-round choke to the Flyers is that lone series loss).

Here are the expected lines and pairings for the Bruins…

Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – David Pastrnak

Drew Stafford – Ryan Spooner – David Backes

Frank Vatrano – Dominic Moore – Riley Nash

Matt Beleskey – Sean Kuraly – Tim Schaller

Zdeno Chara – Charlie McAvoy

John-Michael Liles – Adam McQuaid

Joe Morrow – Kevan Miller

Tuukka Rask

David Krejci misses Friday’s practice, unavailable for Game 2

04.14.17 at 3:43 pm ET
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David Krejci did not practice on Friday . (James Guillory/USA Today Sports)

David Krejci did not practice on Friday . (James Guillory/USA Today Sports)

A late scratch from Wednesday’s Game 1 against the Senators with an upper-body injury, yesterday’s day off didn’t do enough to get Bruins center David Krejci back on the ice on Friday.

With another absence from practice on Friday, Krejci has now skated on just Monday (for just a quick bit before he departed back down to the bowels of Warrior Ice Arena with a ‘maintenance’ issue) and in Wednesday’s morning skate and pregame warmup this week, and has garnered the ‘unavailable’ tag from Bruins interim head coach Bruce Cassidy when asked about his status for Saturday’s Game 2.

Down Krejci, Ryan Spooner skated on a second line between Drew Stafford and David Backes, and the Bruins once again went with the load-up option on their first line with David Pastrnak on the right of the all-zone Patrice Bergeron-Brad Marchand threat. The third line then became Frank Vatrano to the left of Dominic Moore and Riley Nash, and the fourth line featured Sean Kuraly between Matt Beleskey and Tim Schaller.

Krejci, one of three Bruins skaters to play in all 82 games this season, has scored 23 goals and 54 points this season.

The Bruins and Senators play Game 2 on Saturday at 3 p.m.

Bruins defenseman Joe Morrow expected to step in for injured Colin Miller in Game 2

04.14.17 at 3:07 pm ET
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Joe Morrow recorded one assist in 17 games this season. (Aaron Doster/USA Today Sports)

Joe Morrow recorded one assist in 17 games this season. (Aaron Doster/USA Today Sports)

It’s been almost three full months since Bruins defenseman Joe Morrow has skated in an NHL game, but the Bruins will likely ask just that out of the 24-year-old defender for tomorrow’s Game 2 meeting with the Senators at the Canadian Tire Center.

Already without Brandon Carlo (upper-body) and Torey Krug (lower-body), the Bruins lost Colin Miller midway through Wednesday’s Game 1 victory following a knee-on-knee hit from Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki, and it doesn’t sound like Friday’s practice was all that encouraging from Miller.

With Miller out of drills, Morrow slid into the mix on a third pairing with Kevan Miller, while John-Michael Liles moved up to the second pairing with Adam McQuaid, and Charlie McAvoy stayed as the right-side option next to Zdeno Chara.

Morrow’s last game was a Jan. 22 showing against the Penguins, and one that came with one hit, a blocked shot, and (somehow) a plus-1 rating in 15:14 of time on ice in a 5-1 defeat in Pittsburgh. That effort was the end of a four-game playing streak for Morrow, who finished the regular season with just 17 games played.

“We just think the guys we’ve put in have been better,” Bruins interim head coach Bruce Cassidy said on Thursday when asked what’s kept Morrow out of the B’s defensive rotation this season. “It’s that simple.”

A perennial scratch, Morrow last suited up in an actual game in late February, when he skated in a three-game conditioning stint with the P-Bruins, where he recorded one goal and eight shots on goal.

“In fairness to Joe, the opportunity hasn’t been there as much as much as the other guys, but that’s the way it’s kind of played out,” Cassidy said. “But when he does get his chance, he’s going to have to prove he can stay in the lineup.”

A first-round pick from 2011, Morrow has two goals and nine points in 65 career NHL games.

Audio: WEEI.com’s Bruins Postgame Show with Ty Anderson and Josh Dolan

04.13.17 at 6:09 am ET
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The Bruins welcomed themselves back to the playoffs in a big way with Wednesday’s 2-1 comeback victory over the Senators.

WEEI.com’s Ty Anderson and Josh Dolan talked about that, the joy and range of emotions playoff hockey can bring to the fans, and how Brad Marchand needed to answer the way he did in Game 1 following his two-game suspension to end the season.

David Krejci misses Game 1, labeled day-to-day by Bruins interim coach Bruce Cassidy

04.13.17 at 6:04 am ET
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David Krejci missed Game 1 because of an upper-body injury. (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports)

Bruins center David Krejci missed Game 1 because of an upper-body injury. (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports)

Two maintenance days did not heal whatever is nagging Bruins center David Krejci, as the veteran Czech was a late scratch from the B’s Game 1 victory over the Senators because of an upper-body injury.

On the ice for the morning skate and then the pregame warmup at Canadian Tire Center, Krejci departed back down the tunnel before the warmup was over, and by the time the teams hit the ice for puck drop, Krejci’s name was added to the list of scratches.

Replaced by Sean Kuraly, who played just 7:28 in the win, Bruins interim head coach Bruce Cassidy offered a brief update on Krejci’s situation that night and heading into this weekend’s Game 2.

“I’m an optimist, and that didn’t work out,” Cassidy, who all along said that he expected Krejci to play, admitted following Wednesday’s win. “He’s continuing to nurse an upper body injury, so tomorrow he’ll be off, the whole group will be off, and hopefully he can get out there and test it out and go from there.”

With Krejci out of action, the Bruins loaded up their first line when they reunited David Pastrnak with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand (a move that ultimately paid off), and then by all means shuffled the rest of their lines to hell, with Riley Nash and Ryan Spooner splitting second line center duties at various points throughout the night.

“We miss him,” confirmed Cassidy.

“He’s a great playoff performer,” he continued, “But you’ve got to soldier on, and hopefully he’s able to soldier on, on Saturday.”

Krejci, who played in all 82 games this season, finished this season third among Bruins skaters in goals (23) and points (54). He also has 77 points in 93 playoff games since the start of the 2008 postseason, which ranks as the 8th-best point-per-game pace among NHLers with at least 90 games of playoff experience over that span.

The Bruins return to the ice for Game 2 on Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m.

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