BOSTON — Fresh off their first home defeat since Game 1 of the Tampa Bay series last June, the Bruins practiced today at TD Garden with a full squad.
Among the group was defenseman Adam McQuaid, who also participated in the Bruins’ morning skate yesterday before he was scratched for the loss to Philadelphia.
McQuaid, who missed a couple days of practice with flu-like symptoms, was hopeful after today’s session that he’ll be able to make his regular-season debut tomorrow night against Tampa Bay at the Garden.
“Where I’ve come from today compared to yesterday and the day before, I’m hoping I’ll feel that much better tomorrow and just be ready to go,” he said.
McQuaid wasn’t sure what caused his illness, but he was definitely sure he didn’t want it to happen again.
•Head coach Claude Julien went out of his way to stress that just because he was a healthy scratch for the season’s first game doesn’t mean Benoit Pouliot is out of the team’s plans. Pouliot practiced today in a group of four forwards that included Jordan Caron, Chris Kelly and Tyler Seguin.
“He’s certainly not a guy we plan on putting in the stands,” said Julien. “We said all along that he will get his opportunity. I think right now it was a matter of we thought Jordan had a real good camp and that he deserved to start. We feel that Benoit’s not totally comfortable. And in our discussion he said the same thing – ‘Yeah, I’m doing a lot of thinking right now just trying to get used to playing for one team and moving to the other.’ Every team plays differently. Some guys can adapt quickly, some guys are thinkers and it takes a little longer. And he agrees with us that he’s still a little hesitant in some areas. So with repetition in practice, he’s going to feel a little bit more comfortable.”
•Another player who didn’t play on opening night but might get on the ice soon is goaltender Tuukka Rask.
“I wanted to make that clear from the get go that we need to utilize our goaltenders, make sure we utilize them properly,” said Julien. “And Tuukka’s had a great camp and played two really good exhibition games and I think he needs to play and we’ll see him in the lineup soon.”