Hockey Night In Canada Stanley Cup Playoffs 2011

Boston's Bergeron skates again

Categories: BOS vs. TAM, Boston Bruins, Conference Finals, Tampa Bay Lightning

Story Tools

Boston Bruins centre Patrice Bergeron, left, is dropped to the ice by Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Matt Carle during the second period in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semi-final in Boston on May 6. (Charles Krupa/Associated Press) Boston Bruins centre Patrice Bergeron, left, is dropped to the ice by Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Matt Carle during the second period in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semi-final in Boston on May 6. (Charles Krupa/Associated Press)
Patrice Bergeron hit the TD Garden ice this morning for his second straight solo skate. Under the watch of strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides, Bergeron skated for approximately 22 minutes.

Bergeron, sidelined because of a concussion he suffered on May 6, went through several shooting drills. During one drill, Bergeron started at the goal line, skated to the red line, curled into the slot, and pumped home feeds from Whitesides. On another drill, Bergeron skated to the half-wall, turned, took passes from Whitesides, and went to the net.

Bergeron peaked at approximately three-quarters speed. When Boston's Black Aces hit the ice for practice, Bergeron departed for the dressing room.

If Bergeron continues to progress, there's a chance the center could practice tomorrow, either with his teammates or the Black Aces. Bergeron has yet to participate in a full practice since suffering the concussion. Given Bergeron's concussion history, the 25-year-old would need at least one full practice before he is cleared for game action. Game 2 is Tuesday, and the Lightning are preparing as if Bergeron will play.

"I'm expecting Bergeron to be in the game," Guy Boucher said.

Claude Julien didn't disclose what Bergeron's next step will be. Julien, however, stated emphatically that Bergeron will not dress until he's at full strength.

"If he's not 100 percent, he'll never play," Julien said. "Whether it's the regular season or the playoffs. Our organization, even before, has tightened up the rules on that. There's no way we would ever do that to a player. It's too important to his personal lifestyle and the life he's going to lead after hockey.

"That will always come before the game. It's unfortunate, but that's the way it should be. We believe in that. We're going to continue to enforce it. The day you see Bergy back in our lineup, he'll be 100 percent. If he's not, you're not going to see him."

Hot tempers lead to penalties

The Bruins racked up 26 penalty minutes in the third period. Johnny Boychuk earned the first of three roughing calls when he popped Vincent Lecavalier. The Lightning captain had approached Boychuk after the defenceman ran over Simon Gagne. Marc-Andre Bergeron scored on the following power play.

At 19:23 of the third, Nathan Horton and Milan Lucic were both tagged with roughing minors and 10-minute misconducts. Horton took a shot at Dominic Moore. In the following scrum, Lucic decked Victor Hedman. The Lightning didn't retaliate.

"We know what to expect," Boucher said. "We control what we control. That's our guys staying calm."

The Lightning have scored on 26 percent of their power plays in the postseason. In Game 1, Tampa went 1 for 4, putting 11 shots on goal.

Julien didn't agree with the roughing call on Boychuk prior to Bergeron's goal.

"How we end up shorthanded is tough to see when Lecavalier jumps him after a clean hit," Julien said. "Those are things that happen in the game. We can whine and cry about things. But we take care of our own business."

Bruins spring defensive leaks

On Tampa's first and third goals, the Bruins committed deep-in-the-zone mistakes they feel can be corrected. Prior to the first goal, a stickless Dennis Seidenberg kicked the puck to Sean Bergenheim after Tim Thomas. Before the third goal, Tomas Kaberle coughed up the puck behind the Boston net under heavy forechecking pressure from Teddy Purcell.

But the Bruins' ragged play leading up to the Lightning's second goal was especially uncharacteristic. The Bruins allowed Brett Clark to carry the puck from deep in the Lightning zone all the way up the rink.

Rich Peverley, Boston's first forechecker, didn't steer Clark the right way. A flat-footed Michael Ryder waved at Clark in the neutral zone. Clark skated around Andrew Ference once he crossed the blue line. Clark then slipped a backhander under Thomas's right arm.

"Missed forechecks, bad angles," Ference said. "It's not too often you can skate untouched the whole length of the ice. Just missed assignments."