Bergeron skates with splint on thumb

Updated: January 6, 2010, 2:22 PM ET
By Matt Kalman | ESPNBoston.com

WILMINGTON, Mass. -- Patrice Bergeron wasn't giving a thumbs-up to the media before taking the ice for an optional skate with a handful of his teammates -- it just looked that way. That's because, as he pointed out, that's all he can do with his right hand after having a splint placed over his right thumb to aid in the healing of three non-displaced fractures.

Bergeron, who suffered the injury Monday, learned Tuesday that he'll be re-evaluated in about 10 days and then he could be back playing shortly after.

"[I was] relieved; it's good news," he said, before skating with the stick in only his left hand under the watchful eye of strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides. "I didn't know what to expect. The doctor gave me some good news, so I was pretty happy. It's never good being injured and being off the ice. But in that case, it was good news."

Bergeron said the thumb, injured by a shot from teammate Dennis Wideman in the second period in New York, is sore but not too bad. Doctors have said he'll have to deal with some pain even after the two-week healing period is over.

So for the time being, Bergeron will be relegated to Whitesides' regimen.

"I'm going to keep my game shape, keep working out, keep staying strong. And the only thing is I'm not going to be able to pass and shoot, so it's good news," Bergeron said.

Head coach Claude Julien was among those breathing a sigh of relief that Bergeron probably won't miss more time than predicted. There were fears after the game Monday that Bergeron, who didn't travel with the team to Ottawa and instead flew home to Boston to see the doctors, might have suffered an injury that could've required a one- or two-month healing period.

"Right now he can still skate and keep himself in shape, so it's really good news. Knock on wood, we're fortunate because that injury could've been a lot worse," Julien said.

As for Wideman, Bergeron has no hard feelings.

"I should've got out of the way, we probably would've scored there," said Bergeron, the Bruins' leading point scorer.

Matt Kalman is the Bruins blogger for ESPNBoston.com and runs TheBruinsBlog.net.

Matt Kalman

Bruins reporter, ESPNBoston.com
Matt Kalman covers the Bruins for ESPNBoston.com. He has been on the Bruins beat since the lockout for numerous publications and has been covering the Boston sports scene for a decade.

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