By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Bruins are one loss away from elimination, and they seem likely to be without defenseman Torey Krug as they look to save their season.
Krug suffered a serious-looking ankle injury in the third period of Game 4 against the Tampa Bay Lightning. He pursued a puck in the corner in the Bruins’ end of the with Alex Killorn just behind him. Krug lost his footing and slammed into the boards, bearing the brunt of the force with his ankle.
It was unclear on replay whether Killorn applied force on Krug before or after the defenseman lost his footing.
After remaining down on the ice for several moments, he got to his feet and finished his shift before slowly making his way to the bench. Trainers then helped him down the tunnel and into the locker room for evaluation. He did not return.
The Lightning went on to win in overtime to take a 3-1 series lead. The two teams will play Game 5 on Sunday afternoon in Tampa.
Head coach Bruce Cassidy said after the game that Krug has a lower-body injury and will be evaluated on Saturday. Cassidy noted that it’s “never great” when a player can’t return to a game, and Krug left the TD Garden on crutches and wearing a walking boot.
“Sucks,” goaltender Tuukka Rask said. “When we’re missing guys, it’s going to suck. But we have to play with the guys that we have, and we’ve done that all year.”
Krug, 27, was skating Friday night in his 11th game of the postseason after playing in 76 games during the regular season. He recorded two assists in Game 4, bringing his postseason point total to 12 (3-9-12) this postseason.
Entering Friday night’s game, Krug ranked fourth among Bruins skaters in postseason average time on ice at 20:39. His absence will likely lead to the insertion of Nick Holden, who played just one game this postseason — a 4-2 Bruins loss in Game 3 against Toronto in the first round.