By Joe Haggerty
BOSTON Patrice Bergeron wasnt on the ice celebrating with his teammates after clinching a sweep of the Philadelphia Flyers and their first Eastern Conference Finals berth in nearly two decades. The 25-year-old center was instead trying to shake the cobwebs out after a third period hit to the head by Claude Giroux in his own end that knocked Bergeron off his skates, and immediately caused the Bs pivot to skate off the ice toward the dressing room. Bergeron never returned to the game after 13:26 of ice time and a minus-1 on the evening, and was replaced by Chris Kelly in the middle of a Brad MarchandMark Recchi line thats been arguably the best in the NHL during the playoffs.It appeared that Giroux hit Bergeron at least a couple of skating strides after the Bs center had already released a pass from his stick, and there were clearly some in the Boston dressing room that felt the hit was certainly late if not too high. Thought Giroux isnt known as a dirty player there werent many people coming to the hitters defense as a squeaky clean hit. Claude Julien had no update after the game on Bergerons condition, and the B's center was never made available to the media after his team had just clinched the Eastern Conference Finals -- a clear indicator of an injury to Bergeron stemming from the hit to the head.I dont know. I have no update for you guys right now, said Claude Julien when asked following the Game Four win. Basically, I cant give you anything more than that.Bergeron was spotted walking out of TD Garden escorted by several people that were likely going to help the center get home, but it was certainly good news that he was able to exit the building under his own power. Given Bergerons history with concussions over the last four years with the last one striking him during the middle of the 2008-09 regular season there is clear concern about Bostons best all-around player in these Stanley Cup playoffs.Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli will be meeting with the media on Saturday morning, and there is likely to be an update on Bergerons condition at that point after a night of rest and recovery.
Joe Haggerty can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading with the Olympics coming to a close . . .
-- FOH (Friend of Haggs) Kirk Luedeke sorts through the aftermath for the Bruins after losing out on Jimmy Vesey.
-- Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland gave an interview where he said the Red Wings aren’t Stanley Cup contenders this season.
-- Related to Holland’s comments, some of the media in Detroit aren’t taking the dose of reality all that well.
-- It’s a big season for New Jersey Devils forward Kyle Palmieri, who will be starring for Team USA on the World Cup team.
-- PHT writer Cam Tucker says the Buffalo Sabres still have a strong group of forwards even without Jimmy Vesey.
-- Jamie Benn is giving everything to his Dallas Stars team, and that means that the World Cup of Hockey is taking a backseat.
-- The Colorado Avalanche are nearing the end of their head coaching search as they look for their replacement for Patrick Roy.
-- For something completely different: NBC is making the argument that millenials watched the Olympics, but just not on the traditional formats.
Mike Felger and Glenn Ordway discuss a survey of New England sports fans showing that not many are happy with the Boston Bruins.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while appreciating all the birthday wishes I got yesterday while turning 42 years old.
*With the World Cup of Hockey around the corner, there is still a decision pending on NHL players participating in the Olympics.
*With the Winnipeg Jets and Jacob Trouba still unable to agree on a contract extension, some are wondering about comparable contracts for the young D-man.
*In the strict interest of self-promotion, here’s my radio hit with Pete Sheppard and Jimmy Murphy on the Bruins from Monday afternoon.
*Marek Zidlicky is still a free agent option for teams seeking a cheap solution on their back end.
*PHT writer Cam Tucker has the Ottawa Senators and Cody Ceci agreeing on a two-year contract extension after a summer without a deal.
*The Minnesota Wild do the right thing and officially change their goal song to Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” for next season.
*For something completely different: there will be a "Hamilton" documentary and the question will be whether I see that before I see the actual play.