BOSTON -- While nothing has been confirmed on Adam McQuaid after taking a hellacious hit from behind courtesy of Washington grinder Jason Chimera in the first period, the initial reports werent exactly rosy.
The brawny, mullet-wearing defenseman crumpled to the ice after taking the hit, and instinctively covered his face and head following the impact with the boards and the dasher. McQuaid suffered a cut above his right eye and the normal disorientation after taking a blow to the head, and never returned to the game after the collision in the first period.
McQuaid suffered a cut over the right eyebrow and he wasnt feeling quite right. The doctors didnt want to take a chance of sending him back. So well probably learn more on Friday and find out a little more about it, said Claude Julien. But for the obvious reasons that medical staff deals with those kinds of things. The minute you dont feel right, they pull you out. So hopefully well get good news tomorrow, but well find out later.
McQuaid has had past issues with concussions and neck injuries, so there is further attention paid to the symptoms bothering the defenseman. Above and beyond that McQuaid also took a knee to the head during an awkward collision against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday, so hed already had his bell rung to some degree before the bigger blow to his head in the 3-2 shootout loss to the Washington Capitals.
With Dennis Seidenberg in question with an infected cut on his leg and McQuaids status now up in the air, it would appear that reserve defenseman Mike Mottau might be in line for some playing this weekend against the Rangers and Islanders.
Chimera was slapped with a five-minute charging major after taking more than 10 strides after coming straight off the Washington bench before slamming into McQuaid behind the Boston net. McQuaid absolutely turned at the last minute away from Chimera with his head down playing the puck behind the net, but Chimera was going far too fast to control his actions on the ice.
Similar to the Andrew Ference hit on Ryan McDonagh that drew a three-game suspension for the Bruins defenseman, it appeared the hit was reckless while failing to qualify as intent to injure. Thats how Claude Julien saw it following the game, and the Bs coach wasnt pushing for a suspension.
Chimera came off the bench and he was going hard. Maybe it was a little bit reckless, but theres no doubt in my mind that it wasnt intentional. McQuaid just turned at the last second and put himself in a bit of vulnerable position, said Julien. But I agree with the referees call: It was a bit of a reckless hit, and it deserved probably a five-minute penalty. They had to make that decision. It was a tough one.
Thats why I keep saying that I really, really encourage our players to be careful, with the speed of the game today, to make sure you dont turn your back to the play. Those kinds of things happen. You worry about the security of the players, you worry about the safety of the game, and Im one of those guys that will look at both sides of it and not just preach for my side of it.
The Bruins at this point are clearly much concerned about the health of their rugged, stay-at-home defenseman with five games to go in the regular season than they are about what kind of discipline the league opts to pursue for Chimera.