Bruins host Blues in opener of Stanley Cup Final 


Boston Bruins David Backes defends against St. Louis Blues Jori Lehtera in the first period at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on January 10, 2017. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

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BOSTON (AP) -  St. Louis Blues defenseman Vince Dunn skated with teammates during practice in preparation for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, but his status is still uncertain.

Dunn practiced in a full face shield for the second consecutive day. He did not do rushes on any of the top three defensive pairings, an indication he might miss the fourth game in a row with an undisclosed upper-body injury.

Forward Robert Thomas, who was injured in Game 6 of the Western Conference final Tuesday and declared fine by coach Craig Berube, was not on the ice for practice Sunday.

Game 1 of the final is Monday night.

When the NHL altered its rules with an eye toward speed and skill, this is not the final that it had in mind.

Even though hockey is becoming less of a big man's game, the matchup shows that size still matters in the playoffs. Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy says, ``They are physical, we'll be physical."

Bruins winger Brad Marchand says his left hand is good heading into Game 1. Marchand sat out practice

Sunday after being given a maintenance day by coach Bruce Cassidy. Marchand injured his hand during an intrasquad scrimmage last week. He is the Bruins' leading scorer in the playoffs with 18 points.

Five outings in May, but has won only one of his three decisions.  Arlins righthander Jose Urena has won three consecutive starts against Washington.


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