WATERBURY, VT -- The Bruins finished up their team-bonding trip to the Green Mountain State with an hour-long practice at the Waterbury Ice Arena before a packed group of hundreds of fans. There were hundreds more that had to be turned away at the Vermont arena’s front door after the facility had reached its capacity, and there was a single line of cars down the road blocking traffic to the rink once the Tuesday afternoon practice session was underway.
When the Bruins hopped on the frozen sheet, both David Krejci and Carl Soderberg were missing.
Krejci has been out of action since suffering back spasms last week prior to the preseason Friday finale against the Winnipeg Jets, and Soderberg is “highly doubtful” for Thursday’s season opener against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
According to Julien, Soderberg sprained an ankle after catching a rut on the Credit Union Centre ice in the third period of Friday’s win in Saskatoon. The Big Swede wasn’t walking with a noticeable limp following the game, but the ankle swelled up a bit on the long plane ride back from Saskatchewan to Boston.
“We’re hoping to see David on the ice tomorrow, and we’re optimistic about that,” said Claude Julien. “Soderberg is being evaluated. There’s some swelling there, so we won’t be exactly sure until that swelling goes down a little bit more.
“He’s probably a little bit longer. I’d say he’s doubtful for Thursday . . . highly doubtful. But with David we’re optimistic that things will go well for him.”
Soderberg was listed on the B’s injured reserve list along with Marc Savard and Bobby Robins to start the regular season.
Shawn Thornton jumped in to play center between Milan Lucic and Jarome Iginla during some of the battle drills at practice, and Jordan Caron was skating as the left wing alongside Chris Kelly and Reilly Smith.