BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Bruins are getting ready for life without Zdeno Chara, at least for the short-term.
The Bruins captain is day-to-day with a “lower body injury” he suffered in Saturday night’s 5-3 win over the Blue Jackets. It was originally thought Chara would miss 1-2 weeks, but the injury was not as severe on Monday. He will likely miss at least Tuesday’s game against the LA Kings, and possibly Wednesday night against the Ottawa Senators.
Even if it is just for a short period of time, there will be a big hole in the Bruins defense.
“He’s leaving a big void,” fellow defenseman Dennis Seidenberg said Monday after practice. “That means we have to step up. He plays a ton of minutes, against the opposing team’s front line. We have to do a good job and try to shut them down.”
Ference On Chara Injury
Chara’s plus-18 is second on the team only to Tyler Seguin’s plus-19. All 6-9 of Chara brings nightmares to opposing offenses, but for now, it looks like the LA Kings will get a pass Tuesday night.
“Some of the other forwards on other teams will be in better moods. That’s probably the biggest change,” said defenseman Andrew Ference. “He’s a big presence and guys don’t like playing against him. He’s obviously a huge matchup against other team’s top lines.”
With Chara out, that just means the rest of the Bruins defenders will have to step up. Seidenberg will likely move to the first defensive pairing with Joe Corvo. On Monday, Ference practiced alongside Adam McQuaid, with Steven Kampfer and Johnny Boychuk lining up besides each other.
But Ference does not think it will be such a big loss for the B’s, at least not in the short term.
“It’s just a matter of a couple guys getting more ice time,” said Ference. “We’re not changing the game or doing anything outside of what their strengths were before.”
“When other guys go down, it’s part of the deal. Other guys don’t make a big deal about it. He’s going to come back,” said Ference. “Guys just go out and play their game the same way they would have before, just with more minutes.”
“It’s not like when Z is in the lineup we get to play 70-percent and we just play kind-of good,’ joked Ference. “You’re playing hard no matter whether good players are in the game or not. You’re just doing your part.”
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