If you're speechless that Zdeno Chara was back on the ice Thursday days after reportedly suffering a broken jaw ... he is too.
We mean that in the most literal sense: The Boston Bruins defenseman is unable to speak.
NHL PR just confirm that Chara can't talk or open his mouth. He will give written answers to few questions this afternoon. — Jonathan Bernier (@JBernierJDM) June 6, 2019
But Chara still fielded reporters' questions after participating in the team's morning skate at TD Garden -- by writing his answers down on a piece of paper.
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Chara's unprecedented "press conference" consisted of two questions. Here are his written answers to both, via the Bruins:
"You don't think about (risking further injury). You think about playing. You don't go into a game thinking you might get hurt."
"At this time of the playoffs, everyone has injuries and there are challenges that you have to overcome to play. I'm no different than any player on either team."
Chara's teammates may disagree with that last part. The Bruins have raved about their captain's toughness since he took a puck to the face in the second period of Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final and clearly got a boost from his presence at Thursday's morning skate.
Both Chara and defenseman Matt Grzelcyck are listed as game-time decisions for Thursday's Game 5 against the St. Louis Blues. But the fact that Chara still can't speak (and thus communicate with his teammates on the ice) isn't a great sign for his status.
Still, we should know better than to count out one of the toughest customers in hockey.
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