The positive news Monday morning was the Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara took a light skate at TD Garden prior to Boston’s morning skate in preparation for an evening game with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
“Yeah it’s a start, yeah it’s a start,” coach Claude Julien said. “Again he’s certainly not close to being mine yet. It’s his first time in a long time. It’s always encouraging to see your player back on his skates, that’s for sure.”
Chara has missed 13 games with a tear in his knee that did not require surgery. He was supposed to miss four to six weeks and has been out almost five.
There was some mixed news on winger Brad Marchand, who skated with the team. He’s a game-time decision.
But then came the bad news. Forwards Chris Kelly and David Krejci did not skate and will not face the Penguins. In Krejci’s case, things aren’t going well in his attempt to become a regular fixture in the lineup. Krejci has missed eight of the past 10 games.
“Right now what I’ll tell you is we’ve taken a step back again,” Julien said. “Like I said, it’s something that I can’t even go into. It’s been way more complicated. Again as you know, these are not machines, these guys, and there’s certain things you try and fix and then you find out there’s a little bit more and nobody knows and nobody should know until you go from one stage to the next. The one thing I can tell you is that when he played he was 100 percent, but we took him out because after that he wasn’t 100 percent anymore. That’s where it’s tough. You say, ‘he’s 100 percent, should you hold him back?’ I don’t believe in holding anybody back because if he’s OK the next day then we wasted a game with him. So we’re working on that. The only thing I would tell you is that everything I’m being told, it’s not something we’re going to have to manage all year and I know that’s a big issue in wondering what’s going on, but it’s something that’s going to be fixed is what I’m being told. So don’t shoot the messenger.”