Boston Bruins top defenceman Zdeno Chara misses first game with injury

Chara was uncertain if he would be able to play in Boston’s next game on Tuesday at Ottawa, his former club.

“We’ll have to see,” said Chara, dressed in a suit as he was leaving the arena after the Bruins’ 4-3 win over Philadelphia.

Chara, one of the top defencemen available last off-season, agreed to a US$37.5-million, five-year contract on the first day of free agency – July 1.

His loss came after the team’s worst stretch of the season. Boston entered Saturday on a three-game losing streak, having been outscored 20-3 during that span. The Bruins were beaten 10-2 by Toronto on Thursday, the first time they allowed that many goals since November 1997.

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But they responded with a solid victory.

“We had guys that stepped up,” goalie Tim Thomas said. “We were missing one of our best players.”

Coach Dave Lewis said Chara’s status will likely be determined Monday.

“We’ll see how he feels, with hopeful anticipation he travels with us,” Lewis said.

Chara, who played the past four seasons with the Senators, has seven goals and 17 assists in 38 games.