If the lockout does end in the not-too-distant future, the timing will be almost perfect for Zach Bogosian.
The Winnipeg defenseman underwent surgery on a wrist ligament tear at the end of August and, last week, had his surgical screw removed — a big step in Bogosian’s return to the ice.
Here’s more, from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press:
The recovery period from Bogosian’s surgery is four to six months, and if the season were to begin in mid-January, it would be just over the four-month period. Bogosian had a screw removed from his wrist last week and his recovery is said to be on schedule.
The fourth-year defender is in full rehab mode at this juncture and how his wrist responds is being closely monitored.
The third overall pick at the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Bogosian is coming off the finest season as a professional. Despite missing 17 games with various ailments, the New York native racked up 5G-25A-30PTS in just 65 contests while averaging a career-high 23:19 TOI per game.
This upcoming season is a huge one for Bogosian — he’s in the final year of a two-year, $5 million deal signed with the Jets prior to the start of 2011-12.
He’s also part of a potentially star-studded 2013 RFA defenseman class that includes Alex Pietrangelo, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Karl Alzner and Kevin Shattenkirk.
Does the NHL have a cocaine problem?
TSN caught up with deputy commissioner Bill Daly, who provided some fascinating insight:
“The number of [cocaine] positives are more than they were in previous years and they’re going up,” Daly said. “I wouldn’t say it’s a crisis in any sense. What I’d say is drugs like cocaine are cyclical and you’ve hit a cycle where it’s an ‘in’ drug again.”
Daly said that he’d be surprised “if we’re talking more than 20 guys” and then touched on something that may be a problem: they don’t test it in a “comprehensive way.”
As Katie Strang’s essential ESPN article about the Los Angeles Kings’ tough season explored in June, there are some challenges for testing for a drug like cocaine. That said, there are also some limitations that may raise some eyebrows.
For one, it metabolizes quickly. Michael McCabe, a Philadelphia-based toxicology expert who works for Robson Forensic, told ESPN.com that, generally speaking, cocaine filters out of the system in two to four days, making it relatively easy to avoid a flag in standard urine tests.
The NHL-NHLPA’s joint drug-testing program is not specifically designed to target recreational drugs such as cocaine or marijuana. The Performance Enhancing Substances Program is put into place to do exactly that — screen for performance-enhancing drugs.
So, are “party drugs” like cocaine and molly an issue for the NHL?
At the moment, the answer almost seems to be: “the league hopes not.”
Daly goes into plenty of detail on the issue, so read the full TSN article for more.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.