For once, Marc Savard met with reporters and one could guess that the first thing on their minds wasn’t how he was dealing with concussion symptoms.
That’s not to say that the gifted passer avoided that discussion after the Boston Bruins’ morning skate, but even if the discussion began regarding Savard’s health – and the apparent elation he felt – deep down, it’s probably safe to say they were more interested in discussing Colin (and Gregory) Campbell.
After reading Savard’s comments on the matter, it’s probably safe to break down his statements in two different ways.
A: He wasn’t bothered by the e-mails at all, really.
B: This time around, Colin Campbell might be relieved that Savard is “the biggest faker around.”
That’s because Savard downplayed the content of those e-mails, as he discussed with the press this morning.
“I have nothing against [Colin Campbell]. I think that stuff was private stuff, and I think that stuff that he was saying got interpreted in a bad way,” Savard, who noted the emails “didn’t faze” him. “It had nothing to do with the Cooke incident.
“Me and Colie got along fine,” he added. “He actually joked with me a lot. He made me feel comfortable, and I owe a lot to him. He was my first coach that I broke in with, and he gave me an opportunity. … He was great for me, and I’ve got no hard feelings against him. I think that the media should maybe take it a little bit easier on him.”
As for the idea that he is a “faker,” Savard said that he felt the comments were probably less serious than one would think, given that Campbell himself encouraged that style of play.
“I played for Colie, and I think one of the ways when I first came in the league to stay in the lineup was to draw penalties, and I think he encouraged that at the time if you asked him,” Savard said. “I think that’s what he was referring to, but it had nothing to do with the Cooke situation.”
Savard went on to say that he had “no hard feelings” toward Colin’s son and his current teammate Gregory Campbell, saying “Soupy’s a great kid” and that he cannot wait to play alongside him.
Speaking of playing, Savard spoke with media members about the fact that he feels like he “turned a corner” in his recovery from concussion problems.
Marc Savard, cleared yesterday to participate in non-contact practice, wheeled around the TD Garden ice during the morning skate with his teammates. After the session, even following some conditioning work, Savard was all smiles about the skate he had just powered through.
“It felt unbelievable,” Savard said. “It’s been a long time. It’s pretty special to make it to this step. Hopefully I’ll gradually feel better and go from there.”
Savard said he turned a corner approximately two or three weeks ago. Savard has been symptom-free in that time period. Savard credited his teammates, the Bruins’ staff, and fans for helping him overcome his postconcussion syndrome.
All that being said, Savard isn’t all the way there yet. He hasn’t been cleared for contact and – as Fluto Shinzawa noted – said that he isn’t even in “training camp form” yet. So it will be a while before Savard suits up for the Bruins again, but it looks like there might be a light at the end of the tunnel.
And, at least from Savard’s end, the NHL won’t have to worry about a PR nightmare once he reaches that point.