Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy had to offer a full breakdown of the injury situation concerning his players on Friday morning. As you know - and probably dislike - the Bruins have been delivered blows after blows this season when it comes to losing players to injury. The latest player to be added to the list was defenseman Matt Grzelcyk, who was absolutely railroaded from behind by Winnipeg Jets defenseman Josh Morrisey late in the second period of the Bruins’ 5-4 shootout loss on Wednesday night.
Morrissey drove Grzelcyk’s head right into the yellow dasher for no apparent reason and received a five minute major for the dirty hit. Here’s the play in question:
Ugly stuff. Good on Bruins veteran Tommy Wingels for stepping up and coming to Grzelcyk’s defense here. Still… the damage had been done. Grzelcyk remained motionless on the ice for some time before medical staff were able to assist him off the ice. He didn’t return for the third period, but Cassidy offered some reassuring update on his condition, stating that Grzelcyk is a game-time decision for tonight's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. If Grzelcyk can’t go tonight, Tommy Cross would be inserted into the lineup.
The coach was confirmed that Charlie McAvoy, Zdeno Chara, Jake DeBrusk, Sean Kuraly and Rick Nash were still sidelined, but that veteran forward David Backes, who suffered a leg laceration last Saturday, was now ready to go.
While Chara, McAvoy and DeBrusk are not in the lineup for tonight, it was revealed that all three players are progressing well and could return this weekend.
21-year-old DeBrusk has been out of the lineup since suffering an injury in the Bruins’ win over the Carolina Hurricanes nearly two weeks ago. The winger appeared to suffer an upper-body injury when he crashed into the end boards during the second period of the contest. It was first said that McAvoy is out until at least April with an MCL sprain, but April is just around the corner.
There are now just seven games to go in the Bruins' season as they currently sit a single point back of the Tampa Bay Lightning for first in the Atlantic Division. Tonight's game will be one for the ages, and a potential Eastern Conference Finals matchup.