TAMPA — There was little word on the status of injured defenseman Dougie Hamilton on Sunday, other than that he would not play against the Lightning.
Hamilton was hurt in the second period on Saturday night against the Panthers, on a hit against the boards by Scottie Upshall and Nick Bjugstad. He did not return to the game after the 19:23 mark of the period.
“He will go back home to be evaluated by our team doctors,” coach Claude Julien said. “We’ll know more of the extent of it after he’s been seen.”
With Hamilton unavailable against Tampa Bay, the Bruins called up right-shot defenseman Zach Trotman for the second time in 10 days. Trotman was also an emergency recall for the game last weekend against the Penguins, but he did not play.
Trotman had played 17 games for the Bruins this season, and 19 in his career, before Sunday’s game against the Lightning. The 24-year-old has four assists this season.
Hamilton wasn’t the only member of Boston’s team not to play against the Lightning. David Krejci remained out for the 15th consecutive game, after being injured Feb. 20 in St. Louis. Not playing on Sunday gives Krejci four extra days to rest and improve the condition of his left knee, with its partially torn MCL, before the Bruins play Thursday against the Ducks.
“I think, right now, it’s going to be up to his decision, when he feels ready to play,” Julien said.
Asked if that means that Krejci has been medically cleared, Julien said, “A little bit of uncertainty there. I’ll leave it at that. There’s discussions in that area. Has to be evaluated. A player can be not cleared, but can be told that when he feels good he can go, and then part of it has to be his decision. So it’s a little bit of both.”
Pushed on whether he was disappointed in Krejci’s decision, Julien demurred, saying, “No, no, no.” But Krejci himself has used the words “100 percent” in recent days, before backing off on Saturday, as to whether he actually needs to be at that level before returning. The Bruins, after all, have just nine games left in the season after Sunday and they have not yet locked up a playoff berth.
“If you look around the dressing room, not many guys are 100 percent,” Krejci said Saturday. “Everybody is playing with some bruises and stuff like that. It’s on every single team. It’s kind of tough to say. Maybe a little bit selfish of me to try to be 100 percent, you know?”
Paille hit in mouth
Daniel Paille’s unexplained absence for most of the third period on Saturday was finally explained Sunday, when he walked in with stitches in his lower lip and a swollen mouth. Paille had been hit with a puck off a 25-foot pass from Patrice Bergeron on his final shift in the third. As he put it, “The puck was floating in the area and I tried to catch it. I don’t know if I misread it or I got a light shove, but regardless, I missed it and it hit me right in the mouth.”
He left the ice at the 3:36 mark of the period, went to the locker room, and did not return until the start of overtime.
“The result was basically my teeth were everywhere,” Paille said. “They had to push them back down. That was pretty much the extent.”
He added, “Luckily I did not [lose any]. I was on the bench and I was just sitting and something was blocking me from closing my mouth. My tooth popped up pretty good and it was bleeding excessively, so had to stop that, too.”
The doctors — he didn’t see a dentist — used their hands to push the teeth back in, according to Paille. He will have a dental X-ray to check on the area in the next few days, though the initial X-rays didn’t show anything broken.
“It took longer than we expected just because they wanted to get the X-ray results and wanted to make sure that everything was OK and nothing broken,” Paille said.
Smith in lineup
Reilly Smith returned to the lineup after sitting out Saturday’s game as a healthy scratch. It was the first game he had missed since being traded to Boston, after playing all 82 games last season and 71 of 71 to start this year.
“Hopefully a lot,” Julien said, of how the game out of the lineup could help Smith. “Sometimes, we’ve said that before, just watching the game, going back out there, maybe taking a step back will help him bounce back.
“We know he can help our team when he’s playing the type of hockey we know he can. He’s a good player. He can make plays. He can shoot the puck well. So hopefully there’s a little bit of a hunger there to come back and want to help his team and kind of get over the hump he’s been trying to get over for a while.”
Smith assisted on Zdeno Chara’s third-period goal, his first point in seven games.
Amalie Benjamin can be reached at email@example.com