OTTAWA -- Ottawa Senators defenseman Marc Methot could return for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Boston Bruins at Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday (3 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, TVA Sports).
Methot, who sustained a lacerated finger when hit on the hands by Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby on March 23, spent practice Friday paired with his usual partner, Erik Karlsson. Ottawa coach Guy Boucher declined to give updates on his lineup decisions for Saturday, though he did say Methot had been ready to go for Game 1, "so we're obviously getting closer and closer."
"I felt pretty good," Methot said. "At this point, we're going to have to wait until [Saturday] morning and see what happens and discuss everything with the coaches and the trainers."
Boston leads the best-of-7 series after winning Game 1 2-1 on Wednesday.
For Boucher, the biggest question has surrounded Methot's ability to shoot the puck. But that doesn't seem to concern Methot nearly so much.
"It's about clears and stuff like that, on the [penalty kill]," he said. "It's not like I'm getting a ton of shots a game 5-on-5 on the offensive blue line, right?
"I just want to be able to be an effective player and help the team when I am coming back in and not hurting anybody by coming back prematurely. When I get to that point, I'll know."
The two days off between games could make the difference for Methot, who has been spending his time doing some simulation drills off the ice to make sure he's comfortable, and he believes he's pretty close.
"He's a huge piece of our team," said forward Clarke MacArthur, who has been limited to eight games between this season and last because of a concussion. "He's a top two [defenseman]. You can't find those lying around anywhere, so with his experience and the way he plays in our system, he was obviously a huge loss when it happened and the record kind of showed it a little bit after that, I thought. The sooner we can get him back, obviously the better. Obviously he's a big piece."
Asked if there were any pressure being put on Methot, MacArthur said jokingly, "I hope he's under pressure. We need him."
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