Much of Don Sweeney’s press conference Thursday was spent addressing the fallout of Zdeno Chara’s departure.
But toward the end, some promising info about those presently on the Boston Bruins roster was shared.
Two thirds of the Bruins’ top line underwent offseason surgery. Brad Marchand had to undergo a procedure for a sports hernia, while David Pastrnak got a right hip issue taken care of.
Both have been progressing well, but even still, the timetable for Marchand to be back was mid-January, and for Pastrnak it was mid-February.
According to Sweeney, Marchand has progressed really well, and it sounds like the left winger being ready in time for the Jan. 14 opener against the New Jersey Devils isn’t totally out of the question.
“(Marchand) is doing well, he’s been on the ice pretty much every day, he will start to integrate into the main group of players from Day 1 of training camp,” Sweeney said over Zoom. “It’s more of a volume and comfort level (matter) for him. He’s done a lot of work on and off the ice with the timing of his hands and his overall conditioning, and we’ll be careful with it, but he’s made nice progression. It remains to be seen where we are as we move through camp and how he feels as a result of that, we’ll be making contact and such.”
As for Pastrnak, it sounds like it soon will become a “week-to-week” situation.
“David, certainly a longer timeline for return to play and get back on the ice in a regular fashion,” Sweeney indicated. “He won’t initially integrate into the main practice group as he increases the volume in his own return to play. So it’s unlikely he starts the opening couple of games, but we’re going to monitor week by week, continue to give you updates as they progress.”
Even just having Marchand ready in time for the opener or shortly thereafter will cause far less roster upheaval for the Bruins, who will have to get creative when it comes to determining who flanks Patrice Bergeron on Jan. 14 in Newark.