BOSTON (CBS) – Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich on Wednesday morning, but did not offer any update on defenseman Dennis Seidenberg, who left Boston’s Game 7 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs early in the first period with an apparent injury.
“I can’t give you any more info other than I’ll have to talk to our medical staff,” Chiarelli said of Seidenberg. “I’m not going to give an update; he’s ‘questionable’ to start and that’s about all I can tell you.”
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It doesn’t sound too serious with Seidenberg, and he could return early in Boston’s upcoming series against the New York Rangers. The status of fellow defenseman Andrew Ference is up in the air though, with reports saying he is in a walking boot with a broken foot.
Because of Ference’s injury, if Seidenberg returns it will likely mean the Bruins will split up the feared Chara/Seidenberg matchup on the blue line. It’s not something fans like to see, but something Chiarelli says the team needs to be prepared for.
“I think sometimes it has to be done by virtue of the pairs that become available to you. I know we had success when they’re together, but we have to adapt when they’re apart,” said Chiarelli. “Inevitably injuries happen to D’s and you have to spread the wealth a little bit. You like to have them together, but if you have home ice it’s easier to have them a part, especially with the last change.”
The Bruins featured a defensive pairing of rookie Dougie Hamilton and Matt Bartkowski in Monday night’s Game 7, and Chiarelli was impressed with the job the young blue liners did in a pressure-packed game.
“I think they played well and Claude (Julien) did a great job getting them into the lineup. There was only five (defensemen) in total, and two of them were these young guys. Dougie hadn’t been in a lot lately and neither had Barkowski; to get them the minutes they did and perform the way they did, I thought Claude did a great job with that.”
Up next for Boston is the New York Rangers, who are riding red hot netminder Henrik Lundqvist. He’s 8-3 against the Bruins in the last three seasons, and went 2-1 with a .913 save percentage against Boston this year. Chiarelli said puck movement, especially around the net, will be key to beating Lundqvist and the Rangers.
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“It’s not the fear of god struck in me; he’s a very good goalie and he’s had success against us. We just have to figure a way to move him around a little bit,” he said. “We play a similar style to the Rangers, so we have to get pucks in deep. They have good D, but we have to be able to move or cycle the puck around to get (Lunqvist) moving.”