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Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Nathan Horton in Vancouver, but don't expect him to play in Game 7

By Scott Burnside

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Nathan Horton and his equipment are in Vancouver for Game 7 of the Cup finals, but don't expect to see the two united at any point before next season.

After making an emotional appearance at Cup finals games in Boston, Horton joined his teammates on their trip west for the finale of these topsy-turvy Stanley Cup finals Wednesday.

Horton suffered a season-ending concussion early in Game 2 after taking a hit from Aaron Rome, who was suspended four games for the incident.

"He certainly wanted to be here. We wanted him on this trip," Boston coach Claude Julien said Tuesday after the Bruins arrived in Vancouver. "As you know, when you get this far, you're a pretty close-knit group. Our guys wanted everybody here, and they've got it."

Horton's equipment is even hanging in the Bruins' dressing room in Vancouver.

"That's something the guys wanted to do. They wanted him to be part of our group here," Julien said. "Until, again, the [second] game of the final, he was a big contributor to our hockey club. If the doctors would let him, he would play tomorrow, and we all know that that's the way he feels right now. He would be willing to play through what he's gone through. But we know that's not the right decision to make.

"So when a guy has that approach and has that will to want to do that for his team and teammates, the least you can do is honor him in your own way," the coach added. "Our players chose to honor him by making sure the trainers brought his equipment. ... He's part of our team, and we want him there to the end."