According to Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy, assistant captain Patrice Bergeron will “most likely” be back in the lineup when tonight when the Bruins take on the surging Minnesota Wild.
The Bruins’ top line center has missed 13 games with a foot injury, but was recently cleared by the team’s medical staff. He took part in this morning’s gameday skate, taking rushes alongside usual linemates Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak.
"Real excited," Bergeron said. "Obviously it's been a while so I'm looking forward to it. ... I'm just excited to be back. I know it's been a month, so the timing and execution might not be there right away."
The Bruins are just four points back of the suddenly struggling Tampa Bay Lightning for the NHL’s Atlantic Division lead and five points up on the surging Toronto Maple Leafs. A week ago it looked as if a Bruins/Leafs first round matchup was an inevitability, but there’s a chance now, especially with a healthy Bergeron, that the Bruins could catch the Lightning and face one of the Florida Panthers, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers or Columbus Blue Jackets in the first round.
Regardless of who they face, it’s clear that Bergeron’s coach is just happy to have one of his best players back in the lineup. "He'll reel guys in, his linemates, obviously, if they start to get loose, he's good at that," Cassidy said about Bergeron. "He's another coach on the ice. He's a respected oice in the room. He speaks and people listen. [Riley] Nash did a good job [as No. 1 center] in terms of what we asked him to do so we were fortunate to have Riley be able to go up there and do it. It allowed [Bergeron] even more time to get back into this and not worry about it so to speak.”
Bruins sign 6-foot-7 defenseman Sherman
The Boston Bruins announced this afternoon that they’ve signed 6’7”, 220 pound defenseman Wiley Sherman to a two-year, entry level contract that begins with the 2018-19 season. It’s expected that he’ll join the AHL’s Providence Bruins on an amateur tryout (ATO) contract for the remainder of this season.
The 22 year old blue liner just wrapped up his season at Harvard alongside Bruins teammate Ryan Donato, where he put up three goals and seven points in 33 games. The Greenwich, CT native was selected by the Bruins in the 5th round (150th overall) of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.