BOSTON | When the Boston Bruins blew a three games to none lead to the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010, the series-ending injury to David Krejci was largely to blame. Now, the defending Stanley Cup champions might have to stave off elimination without another key contributor.
Center Patrice Bergeron saw limited action in the third period of Boston’s 4-3 loss Saturday in Game 5, after taking a big hit from Alex Ovechkin in the second period. Bergeron, who has a history of concussions, also appeared to hit his head into the glass later that period.
“I’m not sure,” coach Claude Julien said. “To be honest, I get into a game then I’m told that a guy is a little injured at that point and that’s all I know. I’m not quite sure whether it was that hit or whether it’s a hit that he had earlier that he kind of hit the glass, and that’s where I think it started, in my mind. So, I’m not a hundred percent sure on that.”
Saturday night Julien did not have an update on Bergeron or injured defenseman Joe Corvo, who went down after taking a shot from Marcus Johansson midway through the second. It looked like it hit Corvo in the right leg or groin area, and he tried to get up and finish the play.
Alexander Semin scored a few seconds later, as Corvo played without his stick and hobbling. Julien wasn’t thrilled that referees didn’t blow the play dead, citing examples from earlier in the series when pucks hit Caps players up high.
“That was probably the frustrating part for me. We were in Washington last game and twice their players go down in their own end and we had full control of the puck and the whistle was blown right away with no hesitation and tonight we’re deciding we’re not,” Julien said. “So, I guess I was a little perturbed; is there two sets of rules or one? And I know they’re different referees, but it’s still the same series so that was frustrating because they ended up scoring a goal on that.”
The Bruins were forced to rotate five defensemen the rest of the game, though given Corvo’s less-than-impressive performance in the first four-plus games, that wasn’t detrimental.
“It wasn’t too bad,” defenseman Dennis Seidenberg said. “Once you get going and you get your legs going you just roll through and it seems like the more you play the more comfortable you get, so that wasn’t a big deal at all.”
Bergeron’s exit and injury could be a big deal for the Bruins. He finished the regular season second in the NHL in faceoff percentage and is the front-runner for the Selke Trophy as the league’s best defensive forward.
Boston media reported Bergeron’s bag being packed for the trip to Washington for Sunday’s Game 6, but his status and Corvo’s are uncertain.
“You don’t want to see anyone get injured. When you have a guy like Bergy out it is tough,” forward Benoit Pouliot said. “He is one of our best draw guys and one of our best offensive defensive guys. You don’t want to see Bergy go out.”
Jordan Caron figures to draw into the Bruins’ lineup if Bergeron can’t play and Mike Mottau if Corvo isn’t healthy enough to go.
Before Game 5, Julien explained he wouldn’t be hesitant to use Caron if he had to.
“It’s never too much to ask,” he said. “I think to not consider him would be a mistake.”