- Joe McDonald, ESPN Staff Writer
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BOSTON -- Bruins players Patrice Bergeron (gold medal), Loui Eriksson (silver) and Tuukka Rask (bronze) all knew it would take them some time before they felt back to normal after returning from the Olympics.
It’s been a week since they’ve returned from Sochi and they’re still working on getting their body clocks up and running at 100 percent. While Rask was given a little more rest than his teammates, Bergeron and Eriksson have played all three games since returning.
Rask has played the last two games, but is serving as Chad Johnson’s backup Tuesday night against the Florida Panthers at TD Garden. Eriksson is dealing with a minor issue and will not be in the lineup against Florida, but is expected to return Thursday against the Washington Capitals.
Bergeron participated in only his second morning skate since returning, but feels like his energy level is returning.
“It’s tough to say. I think it’s getting there. It’s pretty close but my sleeping habit isn’t necessarily quite there yet, but it’s a lot better,” Bergeron said.
“I feel all right. The last few days I’ve felt better. The first four or five days the energy wasn’t quite the same, but it’s normal and I’ve talked to the other guys. It’s just about taking care of your body and making sure you get your rest and things will take care of itself.”
When the NHL returned from its two-week Olympic hiatus, Bruins coach Claude Julien, who served as an associate coach for Team Canada, said he wanted to manage rest for all the players in March, and not just the Olympians. The Bruins have 17 games this month, so Julien plans on mixing in some off days between practices and morning skates.
“I’m feeling good, it’s just a matter of getting adjusted a little bit more the next few days and things will get better as it goes on,” Bergeron said.