March 2, 2012

Bruins may be down two blueliners on Saturday

By Jesse Connolly

With Johnny Boychuk nursing a mild concussion, the Bruins were already down one key rearguard. That count may rise to two when the B's take on the Islanders in a matinee at TD Garden on Saturday. 

Andrew Ference has21 points through 57 games. (Getty)

Defenseman Andrew Ference left during the third period of Boston's 4-3 victory over the Devils on Thursday night with a lower-body injury.

The veteran blueliner has had well-documented, groin issues in the past, but coach Claude Julien didn't offer up many details on Ference's status.

“Day-to-day is all I’ve been told by my trainers," Julien said following practice at Ristuccia Arena on Friday. "They just feel it’s a day-to-day situation. I’m not going to rule him out for [Saturday] but won’t know if he’ll be going also.”

Boychuk, meanwhile, has made strides in his recovery since sustaining his concussion last weekend on a big hit by Senators forward Chris Neil.

“He’s had some good skates lately, so I guess right now it’s just waiting to hear from our doctors - whether he’s cleared all those protocols he has to go through," said Julien.

"I can’t say more than today, what I’m told, it’s day-to-day. How is he doing today? He’s better, but we’ll see how he is tomorrow.”

Newcomer Greg Zanon made his debut on Thursday, two nights after fellow deadline-day acquisition Mike Mottau suited up for the Black and Gold.

Both defensemen may be needed on Saturday afternoon.