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Where does Savard fit when he returns? 04.22.10 at 1:39 pm ET
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WILMINGTON — The Bruins had a meeting and workout day at Ristuccia Arena on Thursday before heading to Buffalo for Game 5 on Friday night. Players who did not play in Wednesday’s double overtime Game 4 worked out on the ice, including Marc Savard as he makes his way back from a Grade 2 concussion.

“Same as normal, skated with the guys a little bit and tomorrow I will be skating with the guys again so it is positive, for sure,” Savard said.

Savard had a doctor’s appointment this morning to determine if he was ready for contact but said in the locker room that he had not heard back from about his status. Regardless, Savard will not be taking many hits when he does return to the full team practice as battle drills are typically suspended in the playoffs to keep players as fresh as possible.

“I hope to know this afternoon. There is not going to be much bumping in practice from here on in,” Savard said. “You know, tomorrow I think I am cleared to start doing some of that stuff. Some little bumps and stuff and gradually getting back into it.”

An interesting question has arisen with the daily Savard Watch — which center gets bumped from the rotation in Savard’s eventual return? It probably will not be against Buffalo but if the Bruins can put away the Sabres the reality that Boston has five good centers for four spots.

Bergeron and David Krejci are going to continue to man their respective lines. Vladimir Sobotka has been a spark plugged since getting regular time starting at the beginning of March and has really helped the games of the struggling Blake Wheeler and Michael Ryder since he was paired with them in the final weeks of the regular season. With Savard coming back the natural thing would be to put Sobotka on the fourth line and sit either Steve Begin or Shawn Thornton. If Thornton sits, which would be likely in that situation, Begin would go to the wing and Sobotka would be the center but the fourth line would mean reduced minutes for the center and Boston benefits from having him on the ice.

It is a good problem to have but one that will need to be addressed when (if) Savard comes back.

Outside of Savard, there was not much else cooking around the Bruins in Wilmington. A couple meetings and a few players wandering in and out of the dressing room. Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara both gave the “one game at a time” routine and how hard it will be to close out the Sabres in Game 5 at HSBC Arena.

“It is always tough to play in Buffalo. The fans really get into it and they are really going to be going hard, we all know that so we have to be focusing on our game and be ready,” Chara said.

Boston was on the opposite end of the three games to one playoff spectrum last year after winning the first and dropping the next three to Carolina in the conference.

“We’ve been in their situation before so we know how hard it is to win that fourth game,” Chara said.

Read More: David Krejci, Marc Savard, Patrice Bergeron, Vladimir Sobotka
Recchi on D&H: ‘It would be a big boost getting [Savard] back’ 04.20.10 at 2:31 pm ET
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Bruins forward Mark Recchi, one of the heroes of Monday night’s Game 3 victory over the Sabres, joined the Dale & Holley show Tuesday afternoon. Recchi said teammate Marc Savard has been skating longer than the two days that the media found out about this week, and he’s hopeful Savard will return to action soon.

“He actually texted me last week and told me he was actually sneaking on the ice, so I knew it,” Recchi said. “He swore my secrecy, so I wasn’t allowed to to say it. I didn’t even tell any of my teammates. So, I knew he was getting eager and feeling good. It’s great to see him out there. He’s had a couple of hard days of practice [on his own]. I don’t think he likes being out there by himself right now, but hopefully we’ll see him in practice here soon and get him back in the lineup.”

Asked if he thought Savard might return by the end of the Sabres series, Recchi said: “I’m not sure. We’re the last guys to hear when he’s going to play. Like I said, he’s been practicing before us, and he hasn’t been there after. I’m not really sure. The longer it goes, obviously the chances get better, because he is feeling good and he is skating. By the end of this week he’ll have a full week of skating in. So, who knows? … Obviously, it’s going to come down the coach as well, if things are going well, when do you put him in, when’s the right time to do it? Obviously, he’s a tremendous player, and it would be a big boost getting him back.”

As for his own future, Recchi said he feels like he still has some hockey left in his 42-year-old body. “I still love the game, I still love the practice, I still love everything about it, and being in the dressing room with the guys,” Recchi said. “So, at the end of the season I’ll sit down. Obviously, I think I can still play and still help. It’s just a matter of figuring out everything at the end of the year and figuring out what’s best for me and my family.”

Recchi was asked about rookie goaltender Tuukka Rask, who has developed into a young star. Said Recchi: “He’s right there with all them. This kid is a world-class goalie. His composure for a 22, 23-year-old is incredible. … He made the big saves all year when we needed them, and he continues to do it.”

Recchi said Rask does not get taken out of his game even when he allows a goal. “It doesn’t faze him one bit,” Recchi said. “He’s a very, very competitive kid. He knows, he gets upset at himself, but he’s able to put it aside. … Game 2 in Buffalo, he battled like a bugger. You don’t see it too often, but you could see he was fighting it a little bit, he was fighting the puck. But when a goalie competes as hard as he does and fights it and battles it and is able to make the big saves really when you don’t feel great is a great sign for a young goalie. He came out and we had a great win. And then he was awesome again [Monday] night.”

Recchi reflected on the Bruins’ revenge game against the Penguins March 18 when the fans booed the B’s off the ice. “We were kind of disappointed in the way we played because we came out of that seven-game trip just before that playing great hockey and we really seemed to get more consistent,” Recchi said. “We found a way to be a tougher team to play against every night and a team that is committed to being better. That’s why we went on that good stretch — 8-3-1 in our last 12 games or whatever — to get ourselves in a good position for the playoffs.”

To hear the interview, click on the Dale & Holley audio on demand page.

Read More: Bruins, Dale & Holley, Marc Savard, Mark Recchi
Savard skates at Ristuccia at 10:58 am ET
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WILMINGTON — Bruins center Marc Savard skated at the Bruins’ Ristuccia Arena practice facility on Tuesday morning for the second time in two days since sustaining a Grade 2 concussion on March 7. He was put through exercises by strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides that included sprints up and down the ice and stopping and starting between the blue lines. For Savard, so far, so good.

“Just getting my wind back still but head wise everything is clear. Today I have that neuro-psych test and that is the last step, I guess,” Savard said.

The neuro-psych evaluation is one that athletes or anybody coming back from trauma to the head has to take to judge the status of a patient’s treatment.

From the Center for Cognitive Medicine:

“A neuropsychological evaluation provides comprehensive assessment of patients in whom impairments of cognitive or neuropsychiatric functioning are evident or suspected. Assessment involves a systematic evaluation of higher cognitive abilities in order to identify possible problems with brain functioning, help lead to a diagnosis, define strengths and weaknesses, and make treatment recommendations.”

Savard said he skated for 40 minutes and that Tuesday was better than Monday.

“I did some starts and stops today, which I didn’t do yesterday, and felt pretty good,” Savard said.

So the question everybody is dying to know the answer to but realistically has no definite is — will Savard come back during the Buffalo series?

“That is always the hope that you keep, but I said it before that you’ve got to be realistic here, and when I am 100 percent condition wise and mentally positive that I can do this, you know, I will be ready to go. But until then, I am not going to play the game that I play,” Savard said.

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Savard looking better, hopeful for playoff return 04.19.10 at 12:49 pm ET
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Bruins’ center Marc Savard skated at TD Garden Monday morning for the first time since sustaining a Grade 2 concussion after a hit from Pittsburgh’s Matt Cooke on March 7. Savard said that he cannot tell for sure when he will be able to return from the injury but he was much more animated than the previous times he has met with the media since the hit. He said that he has regained the weight he lost after the injury and has been able to do a little golf putting for exercise in the last week or so.

Here is the transcript from Savard’s morning press conference courtesy of the Boston Bruins media relations department:

On how long he skated this morning and what types of workouts he has been doing:

Well, today I was there for thirty minutes I think ‘€” first time I skated and I feel great. I felt great. Biggest thing was the last seven days, I had great days, you know. To be honest with you, you know, I talked to the doctor and I said, ‘€˜Can I get out and putt or something?’€™ and she said, ‘€˜yeah, go ahead.’€™ So I started on ‘€” I guess it was on Saturday ‘€” not this Saturday but the one before and I went out and putted for a half hour and went home, felt great, and then continued on Sunday, got out again and did a little more putting and hopefully I won’€™t have to use that putter for a while. So I just felt great all week and then I guess yesterday, I did that exertion test and everything felt great again last night, so today was my first day on the ice and I just feel normal again, so it’€™s nice.

On when he thinks he can practice with the team again:

Well, you know, tomorrow’€™s another big day, I guess. I got my neuro-psyche test that we have to go through and assuming I pass that, I’€™ll be cleared and it’€™s just a matter of getting back in shape. I haven’€™t done anything for, you know, six weeks at all, so I felt a little short-winded out there because of that, and it’€™s going to take some time and hopefully sooner rather than later, because I’€™m excited that I’€™m feeling good and it’€™s playoff time.

On if he envisions himself coming back in this series:

If you ask me, yeah, I’€™d love to play tonight, but you know, I got to be realistic here and take the proper steps and I’€™m hopeful, I’€™m hopeful. And I can’€™t see these next two games, that’€™s for sure, but down the road maybe, it’€™s going to come down to a coaches’€™ decision and a training decision and myself, so I think I’€™m still a little bit of ways away obviously, like I said, I haven’€™t done anything in six weeks, besides work the remote on the couch, so it’€™s going to take some time.

On if he regained the weight he lost:

Yeah, that came back quick. I wasn’€™t eating much for the first 3½, four weeks and then once I got the taste buds back, definitely ate some food, but the biggest thing is I’€™m just happy to feel like myself again and be around the guys, especially at this exciting time, especially watching the games on TV. You know, I couldn’€™t sit down the last couple of days, watching the games, running around the house and you know, there were some tense times, that’€™s for sure, and I’€™m excited.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Savard drops by the Garden 04.08.10 at 12:06 pm ET
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Bruins’ center Marc Savard dropped by TD Garden for the team’s morning skate on Thursday and spoke to the media to give an update on his condition after sustaining a Grade 2 concussion after a hit from Pittsburgh’s Matt Cooke on March 7. Savard still looks a little pale and speaks like a person not used to being out of bed but said there has been progress.

“I am starting to feel better. I have been getting out a little bit and doing somethings, you know, getting out of the house. Starting to feel better, that’s for sure and hopefully it continues,” Savard said. “I  am still not quite feeling 100 percent.”

Severe concussions are a tricky injury to come back from because there can be good days and bad days. Kind of a two steps forward, one step back type of ordeal. Savard reiterated multiple times that he is “starting to feel better” and that he has been able to get out of the house and do some walking around.

“I have made some steps this week, especially with the good weather I have been able to get outside, get some color and definitely this last week I have felt better,” Savard said.

Part of the recovery process is dealing with an irregular sleep cycle and Savard expressed that was one of the biggest problems that he has been having.

“Obviously I am on a little bit of medication to help me through that because my sleep has been a little bit all over the place. I have had some trouble sleeping through the night but the doctors gave me a prescription to get through that. Having some bad dreams and stuff like that but nothing I can’t get over,” Savard said.

Until Savard is symptom free, he said he is not even going to start to think about hockey related activities. Right now it is enough just to be able to watch the games and root for his teammates.

“There is still minor headaches and some other stuff that I am still cautious about and until that goes away I am not going to look at coming back. For now I am cheering the boys on and able to watch now,” Savard said.

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Savard: ‘Just trying to feel normal again’ 03.27.10 at 2:09 pm ET
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Marc Savard is taking walks, getting some fresh air and trying to regain his full wits.

On Saturday, he spoke publicly about the hit from Matt Cooke on March 7 in Pittsburgh and how it’s affected him.

Thanks to the Bruins media relations department, here is the full transcript:

On how he is feeling and if he remembers the hit:
I am not feeling myself quite yet, still. I still don’€™t have any recollection of the hit. Obviously, I have seen it but that’€™s the only recollection I have, when I see it. I just don’€™t remember any of it.

On if he has any close calls with similar types of hits before this particular one:
No, none of that nature, I guess. I have obviously seen them but, I haven’€™t come close to getting hit like that ever.

On his reaction to the hit:
Well, I have obviously viewed it a couple of times and I think it was a play that didn’€™t need to happen, obviously. To me it wasn’€™t a shoulder and I watched the [Mike] Richards on [David] Booth hit. I think that was a shoulder. I think mine was more of an elbow, so I think there was an attempt to injure there. I was, obviously, very unhappy with what happened and I think it could have been avoided very easily. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Boston Bruins, Marc Savard, Matt Cooke, NHL
Savard: ‘I have no interest in talking’ to Cooke at 1:04 pm ET
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Speaking publicly for the first time since taking a hit to the head from Pittsburgh’s Matt Cooke on March 7, Bruins center Marc Savard said he believed “there was intent to injure,” adding he was “very unhappy with what happened and it could have been avoided.”

Savard said he has had trouble sleeping since the hit and has had a mixture of good days and bad.

“I’m not feeling myself quite yet still,” Savard said. “I still don’t have any recollection of the hit. Obviously, I’ve seen it. That’s the only recollection of it is when I see it. I don’t remember any of it.”

Savard acknowledged that Cooke tried reaching out to him on March 18 when the Penguins returned but he declined through the team.

“I guess he’s tried to get my phone number,” Savard said. “From what happened, I really don’t, at the moment, have any interest in talking to him. I’m not feeling any better so I’d rather not talk to him.”

Read More: Boston Bruins, Marc Savard, Matt Cooke, NHL
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