BOSTON — The Bruins had one defenseman back on the ice with the club, while another blueliner got the day off as the team practiced at the Garden on Tuesday.
Steven Kampfer, who has been sidelined throughout the playoffs with a right knee injury suffered while playing in Providence, rejoined the team for the workout.
"He's been cleared to practice with us," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "He practiced with the other group [Monday], and I guess passed the test he needed to pass, and felt good enough that the medical group thought he was worthy of jumping in with us and then practicing. So that's where he is right now, and hopefully things keep going in the right direction for him."
Captain Zdeno Chara, meanwhile, was given the day off on Tuesday. Chara missed a game in the opening round after being hospitalized for dehydration, but Julien was quick to stress there was nothing more than giving the veteran a maintenance day behind Chara's absence on Tuesday.
"Yeah, just a day off," Julien said. "Z is a bigger body. He is a guy that gets a lot of ice time and for us, it's an opportunity here to give him some rest. The one thing we know about Z is he is certainly never going to be out of shape. He is one of those guys. So give him a rest off the ice and hopefully he will be ready for this big round coming up."
Kampfer may also be ready if needed in this round, but he's not quite there yet. There also seemed to be some confusion about exactly where the rookie defenseman stands in his recovery. Julien stated that Kampfer "can take some light contact," but Kampfer stated he hadn't been cleared for contact yet.
"Not yet, there's still some things that they're pretty cautious about," Kampfer said. "But everything's starting to feel a little better. Skating is going well, so everything is moving forward."
Kampfer skated once with the team in a workout last week, but otherwise had been limited to skating on his own before Tuesday's practice.
"It's a good feeling, getting back on the ice a little bit," Kampfer said. "Now we're still in the process of building everything up, so it's going forward pretty smoothly right now."
While he'll still need to be cleared for full contact and go through some battle drills before being ready for game action, Kampfer is ramping up his rehab each day.
"We just added a little more stopping and starting today, pushing off it a little harder," Kampfer said. "Before it was just turning, so it's the little things that you add every day that are getting things going."
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