Ondrej Kase has not played since the second game of the season, and now he’s in line to return the penultimate game of the season.
A Miles Wood high stick on Jan. 16 concussed the Boston Bruins winger, who has a history of head injuries. Understandably, both the player and team proceeded slowly with his return, and he just returned Friday to being a full-participant in practice. He responded well and was able to practice again Saturday and Sunday.
Barring any setbacks between Sunday afternoon and Monday evening, Monday against the New York Islanders is looking like his return date.
“He’s on track to play (Monday),” Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy told reporters. “Again, let’s get through today, we’ll reevaluate in the morning, it’ll be his call and medical (team’s) call. If they tell me he’s ready and wants to get in, then the sooner the better is the way look at it, because he may need another game. With a back-to-back, usually when you haven’t played that long they’ll recommend ‘let’s not start back to back,’ but we don’t have a choice here, this is all we’ve got is Monday-Tuesday.
“So, the decision to sort of ease him in is no longer available because we only have two games left and, like I said, they’re two days in a row. But again, that’ll be a decision they make more than I do. We’d like to see him get in there, obviously, but they have to make that call, and I’m willing to put him in as soon as he’s available.”
Cassidy on Saturday admitted there are a lot of unknowns with Kase. He hasn’t played in a long time, and a lot of the Bruins’ lines are working well. So, it’s best for all involved that Kase, if healthy, gets a chance to play both Monday and Tuesday so that the Bruins know what they’re working with.