Archive for the ‘Injury Report’ Category


Now that the NHL is close to the halfway mark of its 2011-12 season, one team that might start panicking is the Anaheim Ducks. In October, the team got off to its usual slow start. However, the team (whose roster looks good on paper) has thus far failed to find any kind of scoring touch despite a coaching change which saw the replacement of Randy Carlyle with Bruce Boudreau.

Part of the team’s problem stems from a steady stream of injuries which caused key players to miss a substantial number of games. Lubomir Visnovsky was out with a broken bone in his hand. Jason Blake was lost due to a wrist laceration. Saku Koivu missed games with a groin pull, and rookie Devante Smith-Pelly was loaned to Team Canada for the IIHF’s World Junior Championship during which he broke his foot while blocking a shot. Although Visnovsky and Koivu both paid dividends in their first game back in the lineup scoring one goal and two assists, respectively, the team continues to struggle with only three wins in its last nineteen games.

More help is on the way as Blake hopes to return for Wednesday’s game against the San Jose Sharks but with elder statesman Teemu Selanne as the team’s leading scorer and only consistent player, fans wonder if it’s too late for the 2007 Stanley Cup Champions to turn things around fast enough to qualify for the playoffs. Time is against them so if the Ducks are going to make a push, they need to do it soon.

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In the absence of key players, the Anaheim Ducks claimed former Calgary Flames forward Niklas Hagman off waivers. The Ducks have been decimated by injuries to forward Jason Blake, who is out with a lacerated wrist; defender Lubomir Visnovsky, whose finger was broken by an errant puck; and defender George Parros, whose retina was partially detached when he took a puck to his right eye during practice.

Due to immigration issues, Hagman missed the first game of a home-and-home on Wednesday between the Ducks and LA Kings. However, Hagman’s addition paid dividends in the second game on Thursday as he played a physical part in Anaheim’s 5-3 loss. Meanwhile, in Blake’s absence forward Andrew Cogliano continues to shine on the second line with Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu. As Coach Randy Carlyle awaits the return of his injured Ducks, he continues to juggle the three other lines in an effort to win games.

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Vancouver Canucks forward Manny Malhotra did not attend the team’s morning skate, nor was he available for Media Day interviews. Canucks GM Mike Gillis said that the centerman was at a doctor’s appointment and until further notice, his status will be listed as “day-to-day.”

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Forward Manny Malhotra of the Vancouver Canucks has been cleared to play in the Stanley Cup Final just two months after being sidelined by serious injury. During the second period of a game on March 16 versus the Colorado Avalanche, Malhotra and Avs defenseman Erik Johnson were chasing a loose puck when it deflected striking Malhotra in the left eye. He left the game for immediate treatment and hasn’t appeared in the lineup since.

A week after the incident, the Canucks’ team doctors and specialists initially stated that Malhotra would not return to the lineup for the remainder of the regular season and playoffs. Likewise, associate coach Rick Bowness stated that it would take a “complete miracle” for the 31-year-old centerman to return this season. Surprisingly, Malhotra began skating by himself on May 11 and with his teammates the following day.

Having already had two surgeries on the eye, Malhotra is expected to have a third. However, according to GM Mike Gillis, the final procedure is not necessary for him to resume playing.

Speaking of his return to the lineup, Malhotra said, “I’ve been monitored almost daily the past two months now. The doctors were pleased with the progression and the way things were looking and with the exercise I was doing, [and] the activity I was getting into. There was no change in my status. They felt and saw that it was an opportunity, if I felt confident enough and physically ready enough with the contact and the awareness out there, playing could be a possibility.”

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Yet another brutal hit was delivered last night during an NHL game. Max Pacioretty of the Montreal Canadiens was skating up the boards in front of the Boston Bruins bench when Bruins captain Zdeno Chara drove Pacioretty head-first into the stanchion which separates the two players’ benches. Pacioretty was taken by stretcher from the ice after he lay motionless and unconscious for several minutes.

Following the hit, Chara received a five-minute major for interference because Pacioretty had passed the puck long before the hit. Chara also received a game misconduct with 16 seconds left in the second period. At the time, the Canadiens were leading 4-0.

During the third period, it was announced that at the hospital the 22-year-old forward was able to move his limbs, which was encouraging news. This morning, the Habs released an update on Pacioretty’s condition stating that he suffered a severe concussion and a fractured fourth cervical vertebra.

Today, the NHL’s disciplinary committee held an investigation into the incident but at this posting had yet to announce if there will be any further punishment handed down to Chara. What could influence its decision is the severity of Pacioretty’s injuries as well as a previous suspension which Chara reportedly received a few years ago. What might also be considered is the fact that Pacioretty and Chara have a history this season. After scoring the winner in overtime against Boston on Jan. 8, Pacioretty celebrated by skating behind the Bruins’ net and shoving Chara in the back as he passed him. Chara retaliated and it led to a line brawl.

Whenever the league’s decision is rendered, it will be reported here. Stay tuned for an update.

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