Bruins' Sturm out for playoffs

LANCE HORNBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:16 PM ET

BOSTON - Winger Marco Sturm is done for the playoffs with a knee injury, but bad news such as this is just another day at the office for the Bruins.

A knee brace with a German flag decal was the only thing at Sturm’s locker Sunday morning as coach Claude Julien made the announcement. Sturm was hurt on the first shift of Saturday’s 5-4 win over Philadelphia, when his right leg buckled after he hit Flyers’ Matt Carle. Among other mishaps, Boston has already done without Marc Savard for two months and has two defencemen, Dennis Seidenberg and Mark Stuart, on the mend.

“It’s an unfortunate thing for our hockey club and certainly for (Sturm),” Julien said. “He’d battled through a major (ACL/MCL) injury last year and was looking forward to these playoffs.”

Rugged Shawn Thornton will likely come back in the lineup on the fourth line for Game 2 on Monday after moving aside for Savard’s return from concussion. But the most valuable player in a long season of major injuries is winger Daniel Paille, who was immediately pressed into duty on Saturday on the top line with Patrice Bergeron and Mark Recchi.

“That’s what we’ve done with him all year,” Julien said. “He’s done a great job of stepping in to areas where we’ve asked him. He’s played with Bergeron as a centreman, with Savard as a centreman, with Steve Begin and Vladimir Sobotka, with almost everyone, so he’s been versatile in adapting.

“Some lines are a lot more defensive-minded, some lines you have to create more offence. His skating skill and his forecheck certainly helps in either situation.”

Possible surgery for Sturm, who was pointless in his first six full playoff games after 37 points in regular season, has not been determined.

“There is swelling and right now I haven’t been told,” Julien said.

Julien does expect Sobotka to play Game 2 after missing part of Saturday’s match with an upper-body issue.

lance.hornby@sunmedia.ca


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