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Sunday, March 13, 2011
Kampfer, Ference nearing return

By James Murphy

WILMINGTON, Mass. -- The Bruins' blue line appears to be getting healthier and could get some reinforcements this week in the form of Andrew Ference, who has been out since Feb. 26 with a lower-body injury, and Steven Kampfer, who has been out with a concussion since March 3.

Ference and Kampfer, along with fellow defenseman Shane Hnidy, skated with the Bruins on Sunday afternoon, and Ference and Kampfer said they would make the upcoming three-game road trip that will take the Bruins to Columbus (Tuesday), Nashville (Thursday) and Toronto (Saturday).

Coach Claude Julien said there is a possibility both Ference and Kampfer will cleared to play Tuesday.

"This is a concussion thing [with Kampfer], and it's something that has to be determined by him and our medical staff here, to see that he's a full go," Julien said. "And that's basically coming from him, because he's been cleared. As long as everything is good, he'll be a go.

"There would be a possibility that [Ference] could be in there as well. Again, a lot of it will be up to him and how he feels at that point. With both players, it's basically their decision."

Ference, however, didn’t sound too confident he would be suiting up Tuesday.

“It’s just another step, but not quite back to being ready,” Ference said. “It’s kind of one of those things where you’ll do a little each day and see where it’s at. It’s progressing, but you can’t be stupid about it and jump right back in and reinjure yourself. You’re not doing your team any benefit if you’re not healthy and not good out there.”

Kampfer was in good spirits after four headache-free days and passing his latest test on Friday.

“I felt frustrated for a while, but to wake up Thursday and be fine and then to pass the tests Friday was a good thing too,” Kampfer said. “It’s definitely a perk to not have those headaches again and I’m happy to be back skating with the team.”

Hnidy, who has not played this season after preseason surgery for a torn rotator cuff, is progressing nicely but remains on long-term injury reserve.

“It’s up to the docs, and I feel really good so I’m anxious to get back in there,” Hnidy said. “I’m doing the battle drills and that felt good, so we’ll see. Day-by-day at this point.”