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Is Bruins C Patrice Bergeron playing in Game 3 vs. Panthers?

Boston center is dealing with an upper body injury. Here’s the latest on his status.

Florida Panthers v Boston Bruins - Game One
Patrice Bergeron of the Boston Bruins skates against the Florida Panthers in Game One of the First Round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 17, 2023, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Photo by Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images

Update: Bergeron did not travel with the team and will be out for both Games 3 and 4, according to Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery. Montgomery did add in his comments that Game 5, which will take place in Boston no matter what happens in Games 3 and 4, is a likely return date for Bergeron.

The Boston Bruins set the NHL record for regular-season wins and points in 2022-23, but all that stuff goes out the window in the NHL playoffs. Boston heads south to face the Florida Panthers in Game 3 with the series tied 1-1, hoping to avoid dropping both games on the road. There will be a Game 5 in Boston, but the Bruins would like to either take back home ice or have a chance to close out this first-round matchup when that game rolls around.

One player the Bruins could really use in this series is center Patrice Bergeron, who has not played since the end of the regular season. He’s dealing with an upper-body injury and did skate with the team ahead of Game 3 but reportedly has not traveled with the squad. We’ll eventually get clarity on that key piece of information, which basically tells us whether he’s in or out for Game 3. Bergeron was also dealing with an illness.

Bergeron put up 27 goals and 31 assists in the regular season for the Bruins, who desperately need to find their mojo again. He’s expected to be a finalist and the frontrunner to win yet another Selke Trophy for the best two-way forward in the NHL. Missing Bergeron has the Bruins in a tough spot against a Panthers team that underperformed this season but was able to claw into the playoffs.

Despite Bergeron’s status and the loss in Game 2, the Bruins are road favorites at -155 on the moneyline on DraftKings Sportsbook. We could see goalie Jeremy Swayman get his first bit of action after Linus Ullmark was lit up in Game 2. With Bergeron still out, Pavel Zacha remains the top-line center with Brad Marchand and Jake DeBrusk. Tyler Bertuzzi, David Krejci and David Pastrnak make up the second line.