If defenseman Dennis Seidenberg knows whether he will be back in the lineup for Game 5 against the Rangers Saturday, he didn’t give it away to the media following Friday’s optional team skate.
However, he was one of the first Bruins to take the ice for a brief but intense workout at TD Garden.
Seidenberg, who hasn’t played since suffering a lower-body injury on his first shift in Game 7 against the Maple Leafs May 13, initially looked a bit stiff but appeared to loosen up.
Following the workout, the 31-year-old said he is continuing to improve and felt “comfortable” on the ice.
“Ice time right now helps me,” Seidenberg said. “It doesn’t matter what it is. It always helps somebody getting back. It helps you get your timing back a little bit and maybe a feel for the puck.”
Asked how much he wants to play Saturday, the defenseman replied, “Really bad. Nobody likes watching hockey games, especially around this time of year. Hopefully I get back in there soon and hopefully I can help.”
Veteran blue liner Wade Redden, who has been out with an upper-body injury, also was on the ice, paired with Seidenberg, but coach Claude Julien wouldn’t commit to any lineup changes.
Andrew Ference (lower-body injury) was the lone Bruin not to participate in the skate.
When Seidenberg returns, rookie Dougie Hamilton — who was visibly upset in the locker room Thursday night after New York’s Chris Kreider beat him for the overtime goal — is likely to be a healthy scratch.
However, Julien made a point to show his support for the 19-year-old defenseman Friday, saying he’s been happy with Hamilton’s work alongside Zdeno Chara in this series.
“We’ve played four games in the series,” Julien said, “and then you look at one goal and do you jump all over [Hamilton] for that? Or do you give him a pat on the back for everything he’s done so far in the series and us being up, 3-1? I think it’s more [the pat on the back].”
Krug feels confident
Rookie defenseman Torey Krug continued his strong play in Game 4, blasting a slap shot past Henrik Lundqvist for his third goal of the series. It put the Bruins ahead, 2-0, in the second period.
“It’s always good to help the team,” said the 22-year-old, who was called up from Providence after Seidenberg went down. “It would have been my favorite [goal] if we had won the game. Unfortunately it didn’t work out that way.”
However, it’s not the offensive output that has the 5-foot-9-inch Krug feeling so confident.
“I don’t even think it’s scoring the goals that’s giving me the confidence,” said Krug. “I think in Game 3, that was my best individual game overall defensively. I don’t think they got very many opportunities when I was on the ice.
“It feels great when you’re out there and the coaching staff is playing you more in those pressure situations.”
Krug drew such a crowd of reporters that defenseman Johnny Boychuk couldn’t get to his locker. The veteran shook his head and walked away laughing.
“I was sitting there watching Game 7 [vs. Toronto] much like you were as a fan,” Krug said. “It was unbelievable to watch, and when Seidenberg went down, I didn’t even really think about it. I was just so focused on our playoffs at the time down in Providence.
“It’s a great opportunity and I’m very lucky to have it and I’m just glad I get to spend it with a great group of guys.”