Not '100 percent' that Horton will be ready for playoffs

Not '100 percent' that Horton will be ready for playoffs
April 27, 2013, 3:15 pm
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WASHINGTON DC – Nathan Horton has been out a week since suffering an upper body injury fighting Jarome Iginla, and it appears he might need some more time before his hand/wrist injury is fully healed. For the first time since the injury Claude Julien mentioned prior to Saturday’s optional skate for the Bruins that Horton might not be ready to go when the playoffs start next week.

Horton has been skating on his own for two days and has begun taking the first few steps toward coming back, but the Bruins are being careful that their right winger is fully healed before he returns to the lineup.

“I wouldn’t say it’s 100 percent,” said Julien, when asked if there’s been a determination if Horton will be ready for the start of the playoffs. “To us that’s the main goal. He should be ready for us, but it depends on when we start. He’s skating and progressing, but certainly it’s our goal to have him ready by [the start of the playoffs].”

Horton had come out with emotion and nastiness in that game against the Penguins, and had thrown four hits in the first few shifts of that game before going after Iginla in the opening period. Horton had zero points, was a minus-4 and only had seven shots in the five games leading up to the injury for Horton, and has been struggling to be a factor all season coming back from last year’s concussion.

Rich Peverley has slotted into Horton’s spot on the right wing alongside David Krejci and Milan Lucic, and given that line a little more speed and versatility given his face-off skills skating on the wing. It would appear that Horton will slot back in with Krejci and Lucic when he does return to full health, and that line will need to start living up to their potential as they haven’t for stretches this season.

The Bruins could definitely use his offense as Horton is third on the Bruins with 13 goals scored this season, and is one of only four B’s skaters (along with Patrice Bergeron, Tyler Seguin and Zdeno Chara) that have topped 100 shots on goal this season.