|Joel Quenneville: ‘Optimistic’ Jonathan Toews plays Game 6||06.23.13 at 5:44 pm ET|
The hit on Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews from Johnny Boychuk in the second period was substantial enough that it knocked his head to the ice and knocked him out of action for the third period of Saturday’s 3-1 Chicago win that puts the Blackhawks one win from the Stanley Cup.
It was so hard that it put Toews’ availability in question for Monday’s Game 6 immediately after the Chicago win.
But – as was the case with Patrice Bergeron and the Bruins – there was encouraging news Sunday from the Blackhawks camp that Toews will indeed be able to play Monday night.
“Johnny is doing much better today,” Quenneville said at TD Garden as the Blackhawks arrived back in Boston. “He’s progressed. We’re optimistic that he might be playing [Monday] night.
Bruins coach Claude Julien made it clear that he felt the league got it right by not deciding to discipline Boychuk for the hit. Quenneville, while supporting his player, understood the leniency shown by the league.
“There wasn’t a penalty on the play, and it was one of those hits in a tight area in front of the net,” Quenneville said. “You can be vulnerable in that area, a big hit. The first part of contact you could talk about, but I’m not going to go there.”
Toews scored his first goal of the series in Game 4, a tally that seemed to spark him as he was re-united with Patrick Kane and Bryan Bickell on Chicago’s top line. Saturday night, he assisted on both of Patrick Kane‘s goals before coming out of the game after the second-period hit form Boychuk.
Toews has two goals and 10 assists in the playoffs so far for Chicago.
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Claude Julien insisted Sunday afternoon upon his return to TD Garden for media availability that he is being as forthcoming as possible when it comes to the undisclosed injury of Patrice Bergeron. The Bruins center reportedly injured his spleen in the first period of the 3-1 Game 5 loss in Chicago Saturday night.
“He’s day-to-day,” Julien began his press conference. “Isn’t that good enough? Day-to-day. [It’s] a body injury.”
But Julien did show a sense of humor. Julien reported that he heard that Brad Marchand was asked about the way Bergeron looked on the plane ride home from Chicago Sunday morning.
“Was that you that asked Marchy that question?” Julien inquired.
Then Julien informed the media that he had a funny conversation with Marchand about Bergeron.
“[Marchand] said [Bergeron] looks dashing in his suit,” Julien said before getting serious again. “Guys, day-to-day is really good news to me, anyways, should be to you guys.”
Julien made one more reference to Bergeron when asked if Bergeron’s availability would factor into continued playing time for Carl Soderberg on the second line with Brad Marchand and Jaromir Jagr.
“What does day-to-day mean? I don’t know if he’ll skate [Monday morning],” Julien said of Bergeron. “He may, and that’s what day-to-day is. I’m trying to be as clear as I can here. At the same time, I like Soderberg’s game. Anybody who knows that this guy hadn’t played in two months and played the way he did should be impressed. I know I was. He had good jump. He had no fear.”
Julien said he may have to look for ways to shuffle his lines if Bergeron is not ready to play Monday night in Game 6.
Julien also said he fully agreed with the league’s decision not to discipline Johnny Boychuk for a hit in the second period on Blackhawks captain Jonthan Toews. Toews remained on the Chicago bench but did not play at all in the third period.
Nathan Horton was sporting five stitches above his left eye after taking a hit to the face shortly after Chicago’s first goal in the first period Saturday. Horton said he’ll be suited up and ready for Game 6.
CHICAGO — Patrice Bergeron left Saturday night’s Game 5 in Chicago with a spleen injury, according to a report from Sportnet’s Nick Kypreos. Bergeron suffered a hit during a 4-on-4 late in the first period, played two shifts and did not return. He was spotted leaving the United Center in an ambulance, sitting up and conscious. Kypreos said a source indicated to him that Bergeron was dealing with a possible spleen injury.
A source told me #Bruins Bergeron may have suffered a spleen injury. Team reported he was taken by ambulance for observation at nearby hosp
— Nick Kypreos (@RealKyper) June 23, 2013
Bergeron leads the Bruins with four goals in the Stanley Cup finals series and has nine goals and six assists in 21 games in the playoffs.
|Jonathan Toews knocked out of Game 5 by Johnny Boychuk||at 5:42 am ET|
CHICAGO — The NHL may be looking into discipline against Johnny Boyhuck for his second period hit on Jonathan Toews that knocked out the Blackhawks captain out of the third period of Game 5 Saturday night.
Toews played the rest of the second period and was on the bench for the third period but did not play in the final 20 minutes. Chicago coach Joel Quennville said Toews was “day-to-day” with an upper-body injury.
The Department of Player Safety reviews every hit, so league officer Brendan Shanahan, who was in attendance in the press box, will no doubt take a look.
Rick Nash hit Tomas Kopecky with a similar shot in March and was not disciplined. Given Boychuk’s reputation for delivering hard but clean hits, it’s likely Boychuk will be exonerated and will be on the ice for Game 6 at TD Garden Monday night.
|Claude Julien on Patrice Bergeron: ‘He may be in the next game’||06.22.13 at 11:58 pm ET|
CHICAGO — Claude Julien was a frustrated head coach Saturday night after he lost Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals to the Blackhawks at United Center, 3-1, and in the process lost his best all-around player to an undisclosed injury.
Pressed about the nature of the injury suffered by Patrice Bergeron and his prognosis, Julien tried to be as clear as he could before losing some patience.
“Well, no update, and I think there’s no concern until you get an update,” Julien said. “As far as we’re concerned, he’s just getting evaluated
right now. Not much I can say on his situation.”
Asked what happened, Julien said he was not at liberty to say.
“No, not really,” Julien said. “It’s just an injury that wasn’t able to let him finish the game. He may be in next game. I’m not going there.
When asked if this was an existing injury that was aggravated, Julien reached his boiling point.
“Guys, I’m not going there, so anything else but injury here. I’ll update you when I have an update. There’s nothing more. We can ask a million questions. I don’t have any more information than probably you guys do right now.”
Carl Soderberg, tabbed to take Kaspars Daugavins spot on the fourth line, found himself centering the No. 2 line when Bergeron went out early in the second period.
“I thought we could use him, and although he had very limited experience in this league, he’s still a pretty skilled player and had a good year. I thought if we were going to give him a shot, tonight was probably a good time for it. He showed me enough to be able to move into Bergy’s spot. I thought he played well, and although there wasn’t maybe the chemistry that you see with that line usually because it’s his first time, certainly not disappointed in the way he played tonight.”
|Patrice Bergeron leaves Game 5 in ambulance||at 10:31 pm ET|
CHICAGO — Patrice Bergeron was taken from the United Center in the middle of Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals Saturday night via ambulance and transported to a local hospital, first reported by WCVB’s Mike Lynch and later confirmed by the Bruins.
Bergeron appeared to take a hit late in the first period during a 4-on-4 situation on the ice but he did return to play a limited amount in the second period. He came out after just two shifts in the second and did not return. He was not on the Bruins bench to begin the third period.
Carl Soderberg took Bergeron’s place on the second line, centering Brad Marchand and Jaromir Jagr.
The Bruins confirmed the report but did not announce details of the injury.
Bergeron being taken to an ambulance in United Center
— Mike Lynch (@LynchieWCVB) June 23, 2013
CHICAGO — Maybe it was as innocent as Claude Julien showing his game face but when he was asked why he would bench Kaspars Daugavins and consider inserting Carl Soderberg into the lineup for his first playoff game in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals, he defended his turf in no uncertain terms.
“Why? Because I’m the coach and because I can,” Julien began. “You guys ask me why I make those changes. I didn’t spend three days thinking about that. It’s a situation that I can do. If I do that tonight, we’ll see where it goes. I may just go back to Daugavins, because again I’m tinkering between those two like I have from the beginning of the series.”
Julien admitted that he has only seen him play in six games toward the end of the season with the Bruins, which might factor into whether he plays in Game 5.
“Well, I haven’t seen him that much,” Julien said. “He’s only played a few games, and that’s probably the main reason he hasn’t played in the Playoffs is we went with some experienced players. Injuries have forced us to kind of look elsewhere, and that’s the injury to Gregory Campbell. So Daugavins, we’ve looked at Carl Soderberg, Jordan Caron, and there’s Jay Pandolfo. So there’s situations there that we can look at. We’re trying to find the best fit possible.
“I have to look at whether I feel comfortable staying with Daugavins, or as you know right now, it’s been between Soderberg and Daugavins. But they’re two different players. Size-wise they’re different. One is obviously real gritty along the walls, and the other one is probably more of a play maker. So, there’s a difference there, and that’s where I have to make my decision what I feel I may need for tonight.”