Boston Bruins defenceman Charlie McAvoy entered COVID protocol this morning, as announced by the team. McAvoy will miss Game 4 today in Boston of their First Round series against the Carolina Hurricanes.
UPDATE: Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy has been placed in NHL COVID-19 protocol and will not be available for today’s game.
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) May 8, 2022
Charlie McAvoy Enters COVID Protocol
While the Hurricanes have managed to largely limit the Bruins in this series, especially in Games 1 and 2, McAvoy has still managed two assists in the first three games of this series while averaging a team-leading 25:15 per game. That’s nearly six more minutes than Boston’s next-most-used skater in Brad Marchand (19:34). During the regular season, McAvoy was fifth on the team in points (first among defencemen) with 10 goals and 46 assists for 56 points in 78 games.
The news couldn’t come at a worse time for the Bruins as they try to even the series at two. Trade Deadline acquisition Hampus Lindholm is also out of the lineup with an upper-body injury sustained in Game 2.
What This Means for the Bruins
McAvoy isn’t just the best defenceman on the Bruins, he’s in the conversation for the best two-way D-man in the league. Receiving some of the toughest minutes in the league, McAvoy’s pairings consistently crush the opposition in terms of possession numbers. Considering Boston’s strong possession game is likely the lone reason they have a win in this series, this could pose to be an insurmountable loss for the Bruins.
Brandon Carlo will have to step up in McAvoy’s place until he’s able to clear COVID protocol. In this series, the 25-year-old shutdown defender has been rendered scoreless. However, it’s not as though the Bruins are counting on him for offence.
Moving forward, the Bruins will need more of what they saw from Jeremy Swayman in Game 3. He allowed two goals and finished with a sparkling .926 save percentage in his first playoff start.
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