By Andrew Thompson Twitter: @godwentwhoops
Boston Bruins defenceman Torey Krug left the Bruins-Senators game after just a few shifts in the first period. Later that evening, he was seen hobbling out of the TD Garden on crutches with an enormous leg brace on. While the Bruins have ruled him out for the season finale against the Washington Capitals, he may be out for longer than that.
Once again, the Bruins have been cautiously vague on his injury. They list as a lower-body injury and his status as regarded as ‘day-to-day.’ Maybe I’m an inherent pessimist, but the brace and crutches do not inspire confidence on his quick return to the ice.
If he’s out for even a week, it could put the Bruins behind the eight ball for the first round. If their first round opponent is the Washington Capitals, it could be a very rough return to the playoffs for the Black and Gold.
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Krug was one of those players that became an instant fan favorite. Partly because he was the scrappy, undrafted kid, who worked his way into the NHL. For others, it was Krug coming alive in the B’s 2013 playoff season.
“Losing a guy like Torey’s never easy,” said Bruins captain Zdeno Chara about Krug’s injury. “And he’s obviously been a big part of our team’s specialty teams, and obviously we don’t know the status of the injury, but hopefully he’s going to be back and on the ice soon.”
The 25-year old Krug has been the B’s most offensive defenceman this season. His 51 points led all Boston blueliners this season. He was also just one of five Bruins to have a 50 point season this year.
Krug’s adaptability in the offensive zone often gave the Bruins an extra man on the attack. His aggressive nature would turn a 2-on-1 to a 3-on-1 and give the B’s the extra goals they needed in important games. He’s one of the reasons why the Bruins are returning to the postseason after a two-year absence.
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Now the Bruins will have to work with what they have left as they head into the first round of the Stanley Cup Championships. As much as I would like to see Charlie McAvoy take to the ice, it would be foolhardy to throw away an entire ELC season for a few games. This means the Bruins will rely more on John-Michael Liles. It also means a return to the ice for Boston’s ‘seventh defenceman,’ Joe Morrow.
“Well, we’re not going to be able to replace what he does,” said interim head coach Bruce Cassidy. “He’s a special talent – power play, first pass, breakout, neutral zone transition, all of those things – so the onus will be on us to make sure we make the necessary reads in our breakout.”
The Bruins have had to dig deep before. Now, they’ll need to have someone on the team to have a ‘Torey Krug’ moment of their own during the playoffs.
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