Things went from bad to worse for the Bruins on Thursday night. Marc Savard suffered a partial ligament tear in his right knee and will miss three to four weeks. Fortunately, he will not require surgery.
Savard was injured 28 seconds into Thursday’s game against the Chicago Blackhawks during a battle along the boards. He was helped off the ice and it was quite obvious that not only would Savard not return to the game, but he would miss some time. The injury comes in the midst of an unfortunate streak of events for the Bruins. Not only are they struggling to win games, but they are struggling to stay on the ice.
The Savard injury again forced Coach Claude Julien to again get creative with the lines on Saturday. Sobotka took over for Savard as the center on a line with Sturm and Recchi. Trent Whitfield was called up and played alongside Thornton and Paille, while Lucic played with Begin and Ryder. Expect Julien to continue to shake things up as he continues to search for a successful formula.
Obviously, the Savard injury is a huge loss for the Bruins. With some key components on the shelf, the Bruins face a pivotal time in their season. Clinging to the #5 spot in the Eastern Conference, only four points separates them and the #9 seed, the Philadelphia Flyers. With a tough west coast trip coming up this week, with games against the Ducks, the Sharks, and the Kings, the Bruins could soon find themselves on the outside looking in.
With Savard and Bergeron both out, there is now even more pressure on fellow-centers David Krejci, Vladimir Sobotka, and Steve Begin. Sobotka faces an especially important time in his career because he is playing for a future roster spot once the team gets healthy.
After suffering a 5-2 loss to the Blackhawks on Thursday and a 3-1 loss to the Rangers on Saturday, the Bruins have now lost 3 of their last 4. It might not be time to panic just yet, but stay tuned.