BOSTON — For the second straight day, the Bruins were put through a long workout Thursday at the Garden.
And for the second straight day, defenseman Dennis Seidenberg and forward Rich Peverley did not participate in the practice. But Bruins coach Claude Julien insisted once again there are no serious injury issues with either player, who were again given the day off simply as a precaution.
"No, [it's] still maintenance days," Julien said. "I expect both of them to be in the lineup [on Saturday]."
Seidenberg and Peverley have each played in all 11 games so far this season. Seidenberg leads the team in ice time, averaging 25:02 a game, while Peverley is second only to Patrice Bergeron among the forwards at 17:43. Peverley played exactly that same 17:43 with a pair of assists in Tuesday's win over Ottawa, while Seidenberg logged 23:58 and had four hits and two blocked shots.
While Seidenberg and Peverley got some time off, the rest of the Bruins endured another long and arduous workout as Julien tries to fine-tune their game ahead of Saturday's showdown with the division-leading Maple Leafs in Toronto.
"They've been longer practices," Julien said. "We've been touching the hour practices and a lot of times you try to stay under that and keep the pace of the practice as high as you can. But we have some things we have to work on and I think the guys are good with that. I thought our practice today right to the end when it was time to battle, you could see there was a little fatigue. But what you want to see is them battle through that and they did.
"I'm not saying it's perfect, but it's getting better," Julien added in a sharp contrast to workouts earlier this season which he described at times as being sloppy.
With Peverley out, Benoit Pouliot skated in his spot at right wing on the third line alongside Chris Kelly and Jordan Caron. Steven Kampfer skated with Joe Corvo in Seidenberg's spot on defense.
The other combinations remained unchanged, with David Krejci between Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton, Bergeron centering Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin and Gregory Campbell flanked by Daniel Paille and Shawn Thornton. Zdeno Chara remained paired with Johnny Boychuk and Andrew Ference with Adam McQuaid on the blue line.