BOSTON - Patrice Bergeron skated again this morning with the Boston Bruins, but there is little chance he will be available to the Bruins for tonight’s Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
With two days to kill between games, the status of Bergeron has been a popular topic as he works to come back from a concussion he suffered in Game 4 of the second round against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Will - or, more importantly, can - Bergeron play tonight? Without having taken physical contact in practice yet? Not likely.
But that didn’t stop Bruins coach Claude Julien from muddying the waters.
“As far as Bergeron is concerned, I think if he’s in, you’re going to see him in warmup tonight,” said Julien in response to a question about Bergeron’s status.
When he was asked if he knew if Bergeron would play, but was keeping it a secret for reasons of competitive advantage, he replied: “No comment. Good try.”
When somebody else tried to move the Bergeron topic along, Julien said: “I think we move on to other things here. I’ve got nothing else to say about Bergeron now and if we want to talk about the game, I’m open to that. If not, I think we’re done.”
Bergeron would certainly help the Bruins in the faceoff circle, where they dominated in the 5-2 loss to the Lightning in Game 1.
Julien moved Rich Peverely into Bergeron’s spot between Brad Marchand and Mark Recchi at practice and returned Chris Kelly to the third line with Michael Ryder and rookie Tyler Seguin.
The Bruins weren’t as good as they have been in Game 1. They gave up three goals in 85 seconds in the first period and that was pretty much the game.
“Your compete level can always be higher,” Kelly said. “They came out and competed better than us in Game 1. Give them credit.”