Today, it was another NHL defenseman’s turn to open up — Chicago’s Steve Montador.
Montador suffered a concussion last February. He returned for one game in March, but only lasted four minutes before he was pulled from action and shut down for the year.
It’s been a “roller coaster” ever since.
“There’s a lot of uncertainty, a lot of fear, a lot of anxiety and depression that comes with that,” said Montador, per CSNChicago.com. “I’ve had a lot of help to work through that and I feel like I’ve taken the right steps.”
On the depression the 33-year-old has experienced: “The first time I ever heard the word depression… there’s some stigma around it. What I’ve learned from my condition (is that) actual neural transmitters are being prevented from connecting and being used in the brain, so it’s an actual physical issue.”
Fortunately, Montador is feeling much better these days and is getting closer to making his return to game action.
“Just every day is a brand new day and there’s a lot of enjoyment,” he said. “I love being around the guys, I’m glad to be on the road here. To feel myself get better out there, I’m just filled with a lot of gratitude.”
The undefeated-in-regulation Blackhawks are in Denver to take on the Avalanche tonight.
Alumni rosters announced for Bruins-Habs at Gillette Stadium
The Winter Classic Alumni Game is back this year, scheduled for New Year’s Eve at Gillette Stadium between former members of the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins.
Today, the NHL announced the rosters and coaching staffs.
Famous ex-Habs that will take to the outdoor ice include Larry Robinson, Guy Carbonneau, and Mats Naslund. Behind the bench will be Yvan Cournoyer, Jacques Demers and Guy Lafleur, among others.
The home side will counter with Bruins legends Ray Bourque, Cam Neely, and “Nifty” Rick Middleton, while Don Cherry, Mike Milbury, and Derek Sanderson will be among the coaches. (Quite a trio of personalities right there.)
The hope was that the Columbus Blue Jackets would be jolted into a great, long winning streak, and their season would be saved.
The reality of John Tortorella’s first month behind the bench has been, well, reality. The Jackets are 8-7-0 since Todd Richards was fired. Better than 0-7-0, sure, but at 8-14-0 overall, they remain last in the Eastern Conference.
Fifteen games into his tenure, Tortorella is still trying to get his message across.
“A big reason why we bring them in (to practice yesterday and today) is because we don’t have a full understanding of the standard we need to be at in all areas of the game,” he told The Columbus Dispatch. “Some things you can’t control in our game, but it’s how hard you play, how hard you are with your bite as a team, and the pace you play with – you can control that.”
The Jackets play Wednesday in New Jersey, where they’ll look to shake off Sunday’s disappointing home loss to San Jose. Columbus held a 3-1 third-period lead in that one. The Sharks scored four straight to win 5-3.
The San Jose Sharks have signed forward Dainius Zubrus to a one-year, two way contract, the club announced today.
Zubrus was given a tryout with the Sharks last week.
The 37-year-old played 74 games with the Devils last season, scoring just four goals with six assists. His contract was then bought out.
According to a Mercury News source, the decision to sign Zubrus lay “mainly” with his former coach in New Jersey, now San Jose’s bench boss, Pete DeBoer.
“He looks good,” DeBoer said of Zubrus last week, per CSN Bay Area. “He looks close. It’s tough to find six-foot-four, 215-pound guys who can play. … He’s an easy guy to play because he’s defensively reliable. He plays a big possession, heavy game. There’s a lot to like there.”
In a related move, the Sharks have reassigned forward Nikolay Goldobin to the AHL.