Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports

Noel Acciari expected to miss 6 weeks with broken finger

Ty Anderson
October 07, 2017 - 12:41 pm

The hits just keep coming for a Bruins team just one game into their season, as the team has announced that fourth-line forward Noel Acciari will miss the next six weeks after suffering a fractured left index finger in Thursday’s 4-3 win over the Predators.

The injury came when Acciari took a P.K. Subban shot off the hand while on the penalty kill in the second period, and delivers a definite blow to a B’s fourth line that undoubtedly had some chemistry with Acciari as the muscle with Riley Nash and Tim Schaller.

“He gives us some flavor in that bottom of the lineup, in terms of physicality, he has good chemistry with Nash, they both play a straight-line game,” Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy said after Saturday’s practice in Brighton. “I thought they gave us a hard-to-play-against line with some ability to chip in offensively.

“[Acciari] was starting to grow his game on the penalty kill as well,” Cassidy continued. “It was something we wanted to build in there. So it's a tough one. He's a guy that will put himself in harm's way and [he’s] had a little bit of bad luck again. But he’s a tough guy and he’ll be back, but he’ll be missed as well.”

With Acciari down, and with both Patrice Bergeron and David Backes out of Thursday’s contest, Matt Beleskey saw an increase in his shorthanded ice-time, finishing the night with 2:24 of his 10:16 of time on ice coming with the Bruins on the kill. Even if Bergeron returns that seems will likely to continue on Monday, too, while Acciari’s absence will throw the Nash line into a blender, with Schaller staying on the left, Sean Kuraly moving up to center that line, and the versatile Nash moves to the right wing.

Acciari had two goals, five points, and totaled 80 hits in 29 games for the B’s last year.