WILMINGTON, Mass. — Brad Marchand was the only player missing on the ice from Bruins practice at Ristuccia Arena this afternoon. Head coach Claude Julien gave the young forward a maintenance day after taking an Alex Ovechkin shot in the third period of last night’s 4-1 victory.
“”He’s fine. And that was a maintenance day regarding that.” said Julien. “He could have gone but our trainers felt he would be much better tomorrow if he stayed off today.”
Despite logging an assist and a plus- rating in last night’s home-opener, defenseman Matt Hunwick has continued to struggle early on, and logged just 8:47 of ice time last night. The Bruins’ No. 7 defenseman, Adam McQuaid, could be called upon in tomorrow night’s contest against the New York Rangers. Although no names were directly mentioned after practice, Julien addressed questions regarding healthy scratches and their readiness, and sharpness, if called upon.
“You don’t want them to be rusty in an ideal world. But at the same time you’ve got to do what’s right for the team. We’re at that stage right now where decisions aren’t always easy and that’s not always fun for those healthy scratches but it is what it is. That scenario could change tomorrow, we never know. Game-by-game situations happen. Whether it’s from individual play or injuries. said Julien. “It’s up to both the coaching staff and the players to continue to stay sharp by working and doing extra after practices and making sure that…when you get that opportunity, you’ll be ready.”
If Marchand isn’t ready to go tomorrow night, then we could possibly see the debut of 6-foot-4 enforcer Brian McGrattan — which could be perfect timing as the Bruins host heavyweight Derek Boogaard and the New York Rangers.
“No word yet.” said McGrattan in response to if he had any inkling to whether he’ll get the nod on the fourth-line tomorrow night. “Same as every and just stay ready and do what I can do to be ready. If I get the call to go then I’ll be ready.”
And McGrattan’s response to the 6-foot-7 Boogaard….
“He’s one of the toughest but he’s no tougher than any of the other 10 legit guys.” he said. “But he’s obviously up there.”
Other than McGrattan and Daniel Paille skating in maroon jerseys on the fourth-line, the other three lines, and defensive pairings, remained the same.