Help may be on the way for a battered Boston defense corps, as Jeremy Lauzon was back on the ice with his teammates for a Wednesday session at Warrior Ice Arena.
Out of action for the final four games of Boston’s first-round series win over the Capitals after blocking a shot in Game 1, Lauzon’s Wednesday did come with a red no-contact sweater. But the good news is that he was with the main group, and not the team’s black aces and other injured skaters, which is typically a good sign for a player’s readiness.
That said, B’s head coach Bruce Cassidy still isn’t ready to definitively declare Lauzon in or out for the start of round two.
“Depending on when we start,” Cassidy said when asked about Lauzon being ready for the start of the second round. “He still has to get through today. He’s still in a red jersey, but he’s with [the main group] in a red jersey. That next one will be a normal-colored jersey, and he’ll have to take contact, make sure he’s good to go and then go from there.”
Cautiously optimistic would seem to be the vibe from the Bruins there, and for good reason, as the B’s finished the first round without Lauzon, Kevan Miller, Steve Kampfer, and Jakub Zboril. That threw Jarred Tinordi into action for the series-clinching game in Washington, and while that certainly seemed to work out, the Bruins are another injury from having to throw Urho Vaakanainen into the fire of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The Bruins know they could use a Lauzon, who finished second among Boston defensemen in both hits (98) and blocked shots (53) during the regular season, back in action on their third pairing.
But timing will indeed be everything.
“Let’s just assume [we start] sometime on the weekend. That gives [Lauzon] another three or four days,” Cassidy noted. “He’s trending very well. Will he be ready for Game 1? I don’t know, we’ll probably get a better update Friday afternoon after he’s been through a few more of these practices.”
The Bruins will play the Islanders in round two of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. 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.