Joe Haggerty of CSN New England is reporting that Boston Bruins C Patrice Bergeron has been cleared for contact after today’s practice and will play in tonight’s Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Bergeron has been out of the lineup due to a concussion suffered in Game 4 of the Bruins’ previous series against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Bergeron’s return will most have the most effect with face-offs, as the Lightning hold a slight 73-67 edge so far in the series. Bergeron has been almost masterful in the circle, winning over 64% of the face-offs he’s taken in the playoffs.
If Bergeron does play, Haggerty reports that 4th line C Shawn Thornton will be the healthy scratch for the Bruins. LW Tyler Seguin replaced Bergeron in the lineup for Game 1, but his 6 points so far in the series was deemed to invaluable to lose for the rest of the playoffs.
Expect Bergeron to return to his spot on the 2nd line, with Chris Kelly returning to the 3rd line, and Rich Peverley moving to the 4th line.