Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Marc Savard still has symptoms
Boston Bruins center Marc Savard is "feeling better" but still is experiencing symptoms after suffering a concussion in Saturday's game against the Colorado Avalanche, general manager Peter Chiarelli said Wednesday morning.
Chiarelli said he did not know how long Savard would be out. Savard missed the first 23 games of this season with post-concussion syndrome after being injured last March. Chiarelli said the team allowed Savard to return home early in advance of the upcoming All-Star break.
"The issue with Marc is this concussion happened so soon after the significant concussion," Chiarelli said in an interview on Boston sports radio station 98.5 The Sports Hub. "So that has a lot of bearing on his recoverability and whatnot. That's what we have to watch very closely."
If it turns out that Savard, whose latest concussion was diagnosed as moderate, is going to be out just a short time, Chiarelli said the Bruins would fill his skates by either using rookie Tyler Seguin at center, elevating Gregory Campbell or promoting someone from AHL Providence.
Bruins coach Claude Julien currently has Seguin in the middle with wingers Blake Wheeler and Michael Ryder.
"I don't think we generated much last game, so it's really hard to judge a player when your whole team was a little bit flat in that area," Julien said. "That second goal that [Los Angeles] scored, [Seguin] over backchecked a little bit but that's better than being lazy on the backcheck. Those are young mistakes that you can live with and you work with."
However, should the team determine that Savard would need to miss significant time -- the rest of the season, for example -- Chiarelli said his inclination would be to acquire an impact player to take his place. In that case, the cap-strapped Bruins would need to put Savard on long-term injured reserve in order to free up the salary space required to add such a player.
"He'd have to be out for the whole year for me to go out and find a significant replacement, a bona fide NHL player," Chiarelli said.
The NHL trade deadline is Feb. 28.
"Every team goes through some injuries and it's a matter of us making sure we're ready to battle through without him like we did before," Julien said.
Before Savard's latest concussion, Chiarelli estimated the 33-year-old center was playing at about 75 percent as he slowly made his way back to his old self after experiencing post-concussion symptoms during the summer. In 25 games this season, Savard has two goals and eight assists.
"What I told Marc six games into his comeback, was don't try to get right from A to [Z], go into the intermediate steps, move your feet, make the simple plays, short passes, and everything else will come, slowly," Chiarelli said. "We saw that with Patrice [Bergeron], we saw that with other players. It takes a while to get all your motor skills back.
"You tended to see him try to do everything at once. Having said that, I thought he was coming. He was moving his feet, hew was making plays, he was helping our power play. But he certainly wasn't 100 percent."
ESPNBoston.com's Joe McDonald contributed to this report.