Andrew Ference not ready to return to Bruins

Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien says defenceman Andrew Ference is not ready to return to the team's lineup as the Bruins get set to open the Eastern Conference final against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Coach says he hasn't been medically cleared

Boston Bruins defenceman Andrew Ference hasn't played since Game 5 of the Toronto series. (Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

Boston Bruins defenceman Andrew Ference hasn't yet been medically cleared to play in the Eastern Conference finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

That's according to coach Claude Julien.

Julien said after practice on Thursday he hasn't gotten the go-ahead to play the defenceman. Ference has missed the last seven playoff games with an unspecified injury.

Also Thursday, forward David Krejci skipped practice. Julien says that was a minor "maintenance" issue.

Game 1 of the best-of-seven series is on Saturday in Pittsburgh.