Boston Bruins

By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com

It’s been six weeks since Charlie McAvoy last played in a game for the Boston Bruins, and there’s no end in sight in what has climbed to a 19-game absence for the 20-year-old defender as he continues to deal with concussion-like symptoms.

“Still a day at a time,” McAvoy, speaking with the media during the first intermission of Saturday’s head-to-head with the Red Wings, said when asked for a timeline. “My spirits are high, and I’m optimistic. Things are going well, and I’m starting to skate more and integrate with the team, and that’s the best part for me, because they’ve been doing a heck of a job.

“It’s so good to see them all again and to be skating with them back with the group.”

Given his status as the team’s No. 2 defenseman, the patience from both McAvoy and the Bruins has been nothing short of completely expected, especially with what McAvoy has termed an ‘out of shape brain’ following the concussion. And though the ‘day at a time mindset’ is a completely on-record non-answer of sorts, it’s also an approach that makes sense for McAvoy in the now considering he himself has admitted that there’s been good and bad days throughout the recovery.

Something that’s forced him to lean on his base — be it family, teammates, and management — since flying back to Boston.

“It’s a lot, and at times, it can really consume you,” said McAvoy. “Being my first time going through [a concussion], I’ve felt certain emotions with it, and it’s really tough, but I’m very fortunate to have such a good support system.

“Obviously, my family, they’re always there for me, but just the pointers I’ve gotten from guys like [Patrice Bergeron] and other guys on the team that have gone through concussions – Don Sweeney and all of the trainers and the doctors, they’ve kept me in great spirits, kind of acknowledging that it’s my first time [going through] a lot of this stuff.”

Unable or unwilling to pinpoint exactly when the concussion occurred in or around the Edmonton game (McAvoy’s last in-game appearance for the B’s), McAvoy did note that the symptoms have started to fade, but continued to preach patience.

“There’s a plethora of concussion symptoms,” McAvoy admitted. “When I first had it, it was kind of really overwhelming me. As this process has gone, as I’ve worked with the trainers and the doctors, really doing concussion rehab, they have started to slowly fade away. Obviously, I would have loved for it to happen faster, but this is where we’re at.

“Staying patient and staying positive is something that I’m trying to do my best with.”

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. He has also been a voting member of the Boston Chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association since 2013. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter @_TyAnderson.