Patrice Bergeron’s status is uncertain for Bruins-Panthers 1

Bergeron did not train again on Sunday

by Greg Dudek

1 hour ago

When the Boston Bruins open the playoffs Monday night against the Florida Panthers, it’s unclear if Patrice Bergeron will be on the ice with his teammates.

The Bruins captain and first line center missed his second consecutive practice Sunday due to injury and illness, according to general manager Don Sweeney. This comes after Bergeron was knocked out of Boston’s regular season finale against the Montreal Canadiens early with an upper body injury and was held off for the remainder of the game for “precautionary” reasons.

Sweeney certainly didn’t assuage Bruins fans’ concerns that Bergeron could sit out Game 1, as the front office executive stated his availability would be determined on game day.

“Taking an extra day again today, obviously. That will be decided (if he plays) tomorrow,” he said. Sweeney to reporters After Sunday’s practice, per a video provided by the team. “If he feels good, he’ll play. If not, we did a really good job stretching out a try – (Thomas) Nosek missed a game, he was under the weather. (Jeremy Swaiman) was out today because of the weather. We’re trying. Just monitor that and make sure you balance it out.

Patrice does not need additional training days. If he feels better, he will play.”

Even with a few players dealing with illness, Sweeney didn’t believe illness was spreading throughout the Bruins’ locker room before the playoffs began.

If Bergeron can’t dress up – Brad Marchand said he expects him to play – Pavel Zacha could be the centerpiece of the top line and try to quickly form a connection with Marchand and Jake Debrusque.

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“When one of your best players comes out – we’ve played different games with Patrice this year and all those players come in, but that will be decided,” Sweeney said. “So, we’re not focusing on that. Pavel’s obviously got some casting. He’s very much needed to play Jake and Brad because he hasn’t played with them much. Charlie Quill has moved in there as well. That’s not something we’re very concerned about at this point.”

The Bruins take on the Panthers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference’s first-round playoff series on Monday night. Puck is scheduled to drop from TD Garden at 7:30 PM ET, and you can watch the game, plus 90 minutes of pregame coverage, on NESN.

Thumbnail via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images

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