KANATA, ON Johnny Boychuk was dressing with the rest of his teammates following their 5-3 win over the Ottawa Senators just like any other day.
Boychuk didnt seem any worse for the wear after absorbing a car crash hit from Chris Neil in the third period, but he never returned to the playoff-style contest at Scotiabank Place following the big hit. Both Boychuk and Neil were pretty shaken up after the violent collision that cleanly caught the Bs defenseman with his head down.
Boychuks brother, David, went to Twitter and said Johnny would be okay: Just spoke with Johnny. He said is ok. Little fuzzy but will be fine.
Claude Julien said that the Bs trainers were taking the necessary precautions with him after the hit, and that can only a trip to the dreaded quiet room. The Senator team doctors were dispatched to the Bruins room to take a look at Boychuk during the third period, but there was no mention of the dreaded C word for concussion.
The Bs coach was instead optimistic that their rugged big-hitting defenseman would be okay after the flight home with the rest of his Bs teammates.
He's coming back on the planeand we're just hoping it's going to be a minor bump and he'll be back with us soon, said Julien. "Our trainers have to go according to protocol. That's what they did. They had to keep him and we'll check him tomorrow.He seems to already be feeling better, so maybe that's a good sign."
The Neil hit on Boychuk was nearly a turning point in the third period with Zdeno Chara going after the Senators miscreant to stand up for his defensive partner, and Ottawa potting a pair of Daniel Alfredsson goals to get back within a single goal. The Sens were clearly taking advantage of a Bs defenseman unit that only had four working members by the final 10 minutes of the game.
Boychuk finished with a plus-1 in 16:06 of ice time before Neil lowered the boom on him ending his night.