McAvoy nears return, Bergeron loses All-Star vote

Matt Kalman
January 11, 2019 - 1:08 pm

Defenseman Charlie McAvoy has missed seven games because of an infected cut on his foot. He’s probable to return to the lineup against Toronto on Saturday night.

“It’s trending that way,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said after practice at Warrior Ice Arena on Friday. “We’ll officially announce tomorrow. Let’s get through the pregame skate, it may be an optional, but … then the obvious question is ‘who comes out?’ Until he declares himself in I don’t want to go down that road. But today we practiced a certain way so you can probably draw your own conclusions. He goes in on the right side so it’ll probably come down to Gryz or Moore on the left side, balance it three lefts and three rights. But it’s certainly looking like he’ll get in.”

McAvoy skated in drills paired with Zdeno Chara. Torey Krug and Brandon Carlo were a second pair, Matt Grzelcyk and Kevan Miller a third pair. John Moore was on a fourth pair with regular healthy scratch Steven Kampfer. So the “certain way” Cassidy’s talking about indicates Moore would be scratched.

Cassidy said he’s confident that if Moore or Grzelcyk is out the Bruins have enough other defenseman to make up for the absence of one of those players on special teams. Moore’s a second-pair defenseman on the penalty kill and Grzelcyk is a regular on the second power play.

A vote for rest

Starting Jan. 20 through Jan. 27 Bruins center Patrice Bergeron will be able to literally rest easy. His bye week will not be interrupted by a trip to the 2019 NHL All-Star Game.

The NHL released the results of its “Last Man In” fan vote to add one player from each division to the All-Star rosters. Jeff Skinner of the Buffalo Sabres won the Atlantic Division vote. (Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog won the Central, Kris Letang of Pittsburgh on the Metropolitan and Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl won the Pacific.).

We can be sure Bergeron won’t fret over the snub, because he’d already stated this week that he would attend the game if he won the election but wouldn’t mind losing so he could have time to spend at home with his newborn son and rest up for what should be a grueling stretch run.

Mission accomplished Bruins non-voters.