Colborne/By S. Bradley

BOSTON — When Joe Colborne dreamed of his first official NHL training camp practice, he didn’t envision wearing a full cage and having to sit out some of the drills to limit his exposure to contact.

Nonetheless, Colborne made it through today’s morning session at TD Garden.

“Today was the first day it really started to feel better. The swelling is down,” said Colborne, who suffered an injured (but reportedly not broken) nose in Wednesday night’s rookie game. “The toughest thing for me was I couldn’t breathe out there. You don’t realize how much you breathe through your nose until you can’t do it. So my breathing was kind of off and I kept giving myself cramps.

“Other than, I felt great. No headaches, which was nice. My energy felt fine, my cardio was fine. It was just making sure I got enough oxygen in my lungs.”

NHL players aren’t know for going easy in drills, even against teammates and particularly against rookie teammates. But Colborne said the other Bruins made an exception for him and his nearly 30 stitches holding together his Jimmy Durante-looking schnoz.

“I wasn’t allowed to do too much contact,” said the rookie, who is just five months removed from leaving the University of Denver early. “I had to sit out a few of the 1-on-1 drills. It wasn’t what I was looking for, I’ll tell you that much. That’s the cards that were dealt and it just depends how I react to it now. Hopefully it’ll continue to improve and I won’t be missing any exhibition games because of it.”

Colborne said the doctors hope to get the stitches out later this week. The exhibition season starts Wednesday in Montreal.