Campbell returns to Bruins practice after foot fracture

Campbell returns to Bruins practice after foot fracture
December 19, 2011, 1:40 am
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WILMINGTON, Mass. Gregory Campbell missed three games with a fracture in his left foot, but it looks like hes on the cusp of a return for the Bruins. The fourth-line center skated by himself at Ristuccia Arena on Saturday while the team was blowing out the Flyers in Philadelphia, and then joined his brothers in Spoked B arms for a full practice on Sunday.

Claude Julien had indicated that Campbell couldnt further injure his foot, and it would instead come down to the fourth line forwards ability to manage and play through the pain. Campbell originally injured the foot blocking a shot while killing a penalty in the win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, and couldnt even get his left foot into a skating boot until Friday.

Theres been no extra swelling or anything like that. It felt good skating in practice," Campbell said. Its definitely manageable now. At first it was just difficult to get the foot into a skating boot and maneuver around with it. Its not as easy to judge game situations in practice, but it felt good to me.

Campbell has watched his teammates rip off three straight wins since he went on the shelf, and missed out on the road trip through Ottawa and Philadelphia with his teammates. So the grinder of a pivot is chomping at the bit to make a return as soon as Monday night against the Habs.

Its tough to miss games like that one in Philly. Those are awesome games when its an afternoon game and the crowd is going crazy. In my opinion its the worst thing for an athlete to sit out. Its nice to see the team doing well and thats the silver lining. But on the flip side of it I want to be a part of it.

Claude Julien said it was a wait and see approach for Campbells availability against the Canadiens given the nature of the injury. But the fourth liner shouldnt have gathered too much rust after missing only a week of action, and his toughness has never been in question.

Its his first practice with the team. When you go through a grind of a practice with three-on-three drills and things, you just want to see how that foot reacts, said Julien. Its always better as an organization to make those decisions tomorrow, and well follow up with him tomorrow morning.

While Campbell returned to action Sunday, it was Rich Peverley that was missing from practice after playing sporadically in the second and third periods of the victory over the Flyers. Claude Julien indicated it was a minor issue that Peverley has been dealing with for much of the season, and it didnt appear that it would keep him out of the lineup against Montreal.