B's happy to have time for 'mental rest', healing

B's happy to have time for 'mental rest', healing
April 28, 2014, 2:30 pm
Share This Post

BOSTON – Whether the second round series against the Montreal Canadiens starts on Thursday, Friday or Saturday, it will have given the Bruins ample time to rest after closing out the Detroit Red Wings in five games. For an injured player like Daniel Paille that was on the cusp of rejoining the team for pregame warm-up, that could mean an instant return to fourth line duty for the next series.

For a player like Chris Kelly dealing with a lower back injury and walking pretty stiffly around the Boston these days, it means perhaps allowing enough time to pass for the third line forward to get back on the ice and get closer to a return to playoff action. The same goes for Adam McQuaid and Dennis Seidenberg, though both would seem a fair distance off from a return to the Boston lineup just yet.

Chiarelli wouldn’t given an update on Kelly, Paille, McQuaid, Seidenberg or Corey Potter – who appeared to injure his shoulder in a freak practice accident last week – but said that the rest between series was beneficial for all players.

“It helps, probably more mental than physical," Chiarelli said. "These guys are terrific athletes. The few guys that are dinged up, it obviously helps them recover better. These guys are terrific athletes, and I just get the feeling that the mental rest — the two, three days away from the rink — is really helpful. The guys that are still on the mend that haven’t been playing [have] the extra days to help their recovery period, but in probably a day or so, they’ll be itching to get back at it.

“I hear the Canadiens are having a closed scrimmage today with their black aces, so they’re probably chomping at the bit to get going, too. So we’ll be there probably in a day or two.”

The mental rest is key for any team vying for the Stanley Cup, and the majority of Cup winners in the last 10-15 years had at least one playoff series that went four or five games prior to hoisting the Cup. So there’s a tangible benefit to getting a few days amid the two-month grind of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

With the Bruins completely off the ice on Sunday and Monday, expect all healthy players on the TD Garden ice for Tuesday practice with perhaps another name or two joining them prior to the series opening against the Habs.