Monday, December 12, 2011
Updated: December 13, 12:16 PM ET
Zdeno Chara feels better than expected
By Joe McDonald
WILMINGTON, Mass. -- The Boston Bruins have players coming and going due to injuries.
Captain Zdeno Chara is doing better than he expected after he suffered a lower-body injury during Saturday's 5-3 victory over the Blue Jackets in Columbus, but he did not practice Monday and likely won't play Tuesday against the Los Angeles Kings at TD Garden.
But he's optimistic he won't miss too much time.
"There's no timeframe when I'm going to be back, but most likely I won't be playing tomorrow," Chara said. "Honestly, it's in a stage where we can't talk about anything more than 24 hours ahead.
"The plan is to take a day at a time. You can't really put a timeframe on it. Basically, it's how it feels and it feels better than I expected."
Meanwhile, forward Daniel Paille was back on the practice ice Monday after suffering a mild concussion against the Panthers Thursday. He hopes to be in the lineup against the Kings.
He's passed all the necessary tests, but he's waiting on the results from neuro-psych test he was given Monday afternoon before it's decided whether or not he'll be in the lineup Tuesday.
He participated in the team's morning skate, and at this point he'll be a game-time decision.
"I'm not quite sure yet," he said. "I haven't been told yet if I'm playing or not."
Fellow forward Gregory Campbell did not practice with the team on Monday and is listed as day to day because of an injury to his left foot after he blocked a shot against the Blue Jackets.
He received treatment on Monday and is wearing a walking boot.
"He's labeled as questionable for [Tuesday]," said Bruins coach Claude Julien. "He certainly didn't feel very good today, but he's a tough individual."
Chara appeared to injure his left leg in a second-period collision with Blue Jackets forward Antoine Vermette and did not return.
The Bruins are 4-5-3 in the 12 regular-season games Chara has missed during his tenure in Boston. Despite not skating on Monday, Chara was still able to get in an off-ice workout.
"I don't want to miss any games," Chara said. "I want to play as much as I can, and if it's possible, play all the games. Nobody wants to miss games and it's something I take a lot of pride in and anytime I can play, I'll play. Through injuries or sickness or whatever it is, but you also have to be smart because you don't want to do something that will cause serious problems or things that can hurt you in the future."
Julien said after Monday's practice that he expects his captain to be back sooner rather than later. In the meantime, the coach won't change his game plan.
"We don't believe in changing our game because one guy is out, or whatever the case may be," Julien said. "We play the same way. We just need guys to step up and be able to fill in some of the minutes he takes during a game and that's as far as we'll go with an injury.
"When you lose a key player it's a big void, but other teams, including ourselves, have dealt with that in the past and there's nothing more you can do about it. To say he leaves a big void doesn't mean we can't fill it and that's the way we feel right now. We've got enough guys who can come in and do the job."
Paille collided with the Panthers' Krys Barch early in the first period of the Bruins' 2-0 loss last Thursday. He was shaken up on the play and did not return.
"Literally right after I didn't feel any symptoms," Paille said. "It was more of a precaution. I felt like I could have kept on playing, but there have been guys to do that then missed a significant amount of time, so the doctors made the decision."
Julien decided Monday would be a no-contact practice and admitted afterward that Paille looked fine.
"He's going through the protocol he has to go through and so far things are going well," Julien said. "He could be (in the lineup) but it all depends how everything goes. He still has to go through a couple of things and that was another stage he went through today."
Joe McDonald covers the Bruins and Red Sox for ESPNBoston.com. ESPN Stats & Information contributed to this report.