ST. LOUIS — Loui Eriksson can’t seem to win.
The forward already has suffered two concussions this season, coming in 45 days and costing him 21 games, and on Thursday against the Blues, he absorbed a high stick to the mouth that might have cost him some teeth and certainly earned him some stitches.
The injury came on a play that seemed — to the Bruins — to have negated a Blues goal.
Instead, the goal counted and there was no penalty.
“The linesman saw it,” coach Claude Julien said after the 3-2 overtime loss. “The rule is the linesman can call it if it’s a high stick and there’s blood. We thought it was going to get called because he had told us he’d seen it, but that whistle had to be blown right away and it wasn’t. Obviously, they can’t take it back.
“We’ve got a player that lost some teeth, got some teeth bashed in, and had quite a few stitches in his mouth. The guy’s already been through a lot. Poor Loui for us this year. Nothing is getting called against him and he’s just taking his lumps. It was a little disappointing.”
It was also a sequence that left Julien yelling (and swearing) at the officials.
The high stick came from Maxim Lapierre just before the Blues brought the puck up the ice, a play that ended with Alexander Steen putting the puck past Tuukka Rask at 15:48 of the first period to open the scoring.
Eriksson was dripping blood, but there was no call.
“We thought, technically we thought [the goal] wouldn’t count, they could take it back,” Julien said. “But they said no, it had to be blown right away. So anyway, I don’t even know if it’s mistakes or they weren’t 100 percent sure so they didn’t really blow the whistle right away.
“Like I said, you move on, whether you’re happy or not with it you just move on and you accept that there’s mistakes from everybody in this game. You can’t let those things drag you down, and we didn’t.”
Eriksson went down the tunnel to get repairs, and remained there for the rest of the first period. He was back out early in the second period, and played the rest of the game, but did not speak to reporters. He had 15:41 of ice time with one shot on goal.
Young on D
Without Zdeno Chara, who already has left for the Olympics, in the lineup, the Bruins were tasked with taking on the Blues, and the Senators on Saturday, with one veteran on their blue line. That, of course, was Johnny Boychuk, who has played 298 regular-season games.
His teammates on defense? Well, Dougie Hamilton (82), Matt Bartkowski (61), Torey Krug (59), Kevan Miller (23), and David Warsofsky (5) have combined for just 230 games.
Did that mean possible added responsibility for Boychuk, who had one of his best games of the season in Tuesday’s win over the Canucks, leading the Bruins with 24:04 of ice time?
“I don’t think it does,” Julien said. “I don’t expect him to give me more because that means he hasn’t given enough. I think I need him to be at the top of his game just to play well and do his job.”
It adds up
When Warsofsky was asked about replacing Chara’s minutes, he joked, “I don’t think I can count that high, how many minutes he usually plays.” . . . Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk is a former teammate of Warsofsky’s at BU. The 25-year-old Shattenkirk is headed to the Olympics with Team USA . . . The Bruins are on a 4-1-1 stretch on the road, not having lost in regulation since a 4-2 defeat to the Kings Jan. 9 . . . The Bruins had an optional morning skate at the Scottrade Center. Players not on the ice were Milan Lucic, David Krejci, Jarome Iginla, Gregory Campbell, Shawn Thornton, and Rask . . . Jordan Caron was the healthy scratch. Adam McQuaid (leg) also didn’t play . . . The Bruins will hold their annual “PJ Drive” during Saturday’s game against Ottawa at TD Garden. The team will collect new, unused pajamas for Cradles to Crayons, which will give them to needy children across Massachusetts.Amalie Benjamin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @amaliebenjamin.