WILMINGTON — Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid looked comfortable skating during practice with his teammates on Friday at Ristuccia Arena.
It was the first time McQuaid participated in a full, on-ice workout since suffering a lower-body injury against Toronto Nov. 9.
Whether he is available to return on Saturday afternoon against Carolina at TD Garden remains to be seen.
“I’m getting there,’’ said McQuaid, who has skated five days in a row. “Today was better than yesterday. I kind of got into some more game-like situations, some down low play and stuff like that. I’m happy with how each day is progressing and we’ll see what tomorrow brings.’’
McQuaid said he plans to talk with the training staff and coaches and see where they go from here.
“I think it’s going to be something that I’m probably going to have to play through a little bit,’’ said McQuaid. “You want to make sure that it gets to a certain point that you’re not going to reinjure yourself and ultimately you’re capable of doing everything you need to do on the ice. It’s all new to me. Every day I’m not sure what the next day is going to bring, but I’m doing what I’m told and trying to work through things.’’
If McQuaid isn’t able to suit up, the Bruins were impressed by Kevan Miller, who made his NHL debut against the St. Louis Blues Thursday and looked as if he belonged.
“I thought he played great, solid, and he moved the puck well,’’ said McQuaid. “I was saying to some of the other guys, I don’t think he made a bad play. He seemed to always find the right guy and the right option. It’s obviously exciting to see guys get their first game and we’re excited for him and his family was here. I am sure it was an exciting day for everyone. If he plays that well in his first game, he’s got a bright future ahead of him.’’
Coach Claude Julien praised Miller’s play after the game. On Friday, Julien reiterated how solid Miller looked.
“He made good plays, he defended well,’’ said Julien. “He didn’t really get beat in any areas of the game. Sometimes you need those kind of guys who will come in and not play it safe because I thought he did a great job of supporting the attack and made some real good moves at the blue line, carrying the puck across and stuff like that. He just played with a lot of confidence. We’ll see how Adam is tomorrow morning and we’ll make a decision then.
“If he’s not quite ready to go, we know what we’ve got and I have no issues putting [Miller] in the lineup tomorrow as well.’’
Dennis Seidenberg to sit out
Defenseman Dennis Seidenberg will not play against Carolina. He has yet to skate since suffering a lower-body injury Tuesday night against the Rangers. “He’s day to day,’’ said Julien. “He hasn’t skated yet so he’s not going to be in the lineup [Saturday].’’ . . . Tuukka Rask likely will get the day off with backup Chad Johnson stepping in against the Hurricanes. Rask made no secret of his unhappiness after losing Thursday’s game in a shootout. Rask smashed his stick and told the media after the game he wishes the NHL would gas the shootout right now. “He was frustrated,’’ said Julien. “We’ve seen worse, we’ve seen a crate go flying before. That’s just Tuukka, he’s got that temper. Sometimes, you wish he’d kind of hide it a little bit and hold on for at least a minute and do it behind closed doors, but that’s just the way he is. That’s his personality. He had a new stick in his hands today and he finally destroyed the other one after numerous tries. I’m just laughing it off. It’s just a frustrated goaltender who really takes a lot of pride in winning games and no matter what he does, if he feels he didn’t pull his load, he’s going to be like that toward [himself], but that’s his thinking, not ours.’’ . . . Julien had a lot of praise for the recent play of fourth-liners Daniel Paille, Gregory Campbell, and Shawn Thornton. “I think they’re playing well,’’ said the coach. “[Thursday night], to be honest with you, I thought they were as good as our top lines, how they moved the puck and the chances they had and the time they spent in the offensive zone. I think those are the encouraging signs for me to see our four lines performing almost at the same level. When your fourth line can perform like a top line, it’s a great sign.’’