Peverley could return 'sooner rather than later'

Peverley could return 'sooner rather than later'
March 22, 2012, 5:14 am
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SAN JOSE, Calif. While Rich Peverley moved a lot closer to a return to the Bs lineup after taking some contact for the first time on Wednesday, the versatile winger wont be playing against the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.

Bruins coach Claude Julien ruled out Peverley for the first game of the three-game road trip through California, but said the winger is day-to-day while attempting to return from a sprained right knee. Julien also wouldnt rule out Peverley potentially returning at some point during the three games, and it does appear that the Sunday finale in Anaheim could become a chance to play the forward depending on what happens in the first two games of the trip.

Whether Peverley plays on the trip or not, it appears he should back in the lineup by the time the Bruins return to Boston next week and thats good news for a Black and Gold club looking to finish strong as they push for the playoffs.

Hes a day-to-day situation. We keep giving him more all the time-to-time. My prediction is that well be seeing him sooner rather than later, said Julien.

Thats not to say that well see him on this trip. If he plays then hell have progressed to that point. But we brought him on this trip to let him practice with the team, and see where he can get to.

Peverley skated with Benoit Pouliot, Chris Kelly and Brian Rolston as a part of the Bs red-hot third line at Wednesdays practice, and it would appear that would be his landing spot when he does jump back into the fray. It should be interesting to watch the urgency in Pouliots game in the next couple of games with the knowledge that Peverley could displace him in the postseason hes not firing on all cylinders.

More than anything else, Peverly's return will give Julien options with 10 games left in the regular season and the playoffs rapidly approaching. Peverley has missed 22 games with an assortment of lower body injuries and hasnt played a game since knocking knees with Habs defenseman Hal Gill on Feb. 15 at the Bell Centre.