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Rusnak: Bourque getting closer to returning to Habs lineup

Jessica Rusnak
3/20/2013 2:32:46 PM
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Rene Bourque is getting closer and closer to making his return to the Habs line up. Bourque, who is cleared for contact in practice will be making the road trip to Long Island to continue training with his team.

After missing the last 12 games with a concussion there could be a possibility he will play against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday if he gets medical clearance.

It's still unknown when exactly Bourque suffered the concussion, he suspects it might have happened as a result of the punch he took from Toronto Maple Leafs forward Colton Orr on February 9 or from a hit in the Florida Panthers game on February 14. Bourque only began to feel symptoms on February 22, over a week after both those incidents.

It was originally believed to be the flu that was keeping him out of the lineup but was later discovered to be much more than that. Bourque has dealt with concussions in the past but never to this degree. Right now he wants to make sure he is 110 percent recovered before he makes his return to the lineup.

Other news at practice:  the Habs announced that  they signed Francis Bouillon to a one year contract extension worth 1.5 million. This came as a bit of a surprise for the 37-year-old defenseman who wasn't sure if he fit into the Habs future next season because of the number of young defensemen they have playing with their farm team the Hamilton Bulldogs.

Michel Therrien whose relationship with Bouillon goes back to the 1990s, when he coached Bouillon in the QMJHL, says he is a huge part of their team especially when it comes to helping young defensemen get used to playing in the NHL. Right now Bouillon is taking on a mentorship role with Jarred Tinordi.

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