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Bruins expected to be fully healthy upon return from Christmas break

The Bruins are on the cusp of being something they have yet to be in any single one of their 37 games to date: healthy.

"I suspect [Jake DeBrusk] will play on [Thursday]," said Cassidy. "[Zdeno Chara]'s looking better, he's a potential for [Thursday] as well. Kevan [Miller] should play [Thursday], so we could have as many as three guys back."

It's a (potential) Christmas miracle!

Dec. 27 is the earliest that Miller could be cleared to return to game action after taking a puck to the throat in a Nov. 26 loss to the Maple Leafs, and DeBrusk appeared close to rejoining the B's lineup this past weekend as he continues to work back from a concussion that's knocked him on the shelf for the last nine games, so their likely returns are not a shock.

But without a practice at their disposal before Thursday's game, the 41-year-old Chara's return to the lineup may have to wait another game or two, according to Cassidy.

"Zee is in the close category now because we don't practice as a team before that game," Cassidy acknowledged. "That might push him back, but as of right now he's looking like he could be available."

Regardless of it's this Thursday or later, Chara is still very much paced to return to the Black and Gold's lineup in time for the 2019 Winter Classic at the latest, as first reported by 98.5 The Sports Hub over the weekend.