The Detroit Red Wings are hoping to have veteran Johan Franzen in the lineup this season.
Franzen has not played since suffering his latest concussion on Jan. 6. The 35-year-old appeared in 33 games last season scoring seven goals and 15 assists.
Wings’ GM Ken Holland has been in contact with the Swede over the summer and is hoping Franzen is cleared for contact next month.
“My expectations and hopes are he’s going to be cleared when he takes his physical at camp,” Holland told MLive.com. “Ultimately, it’s in the hands of Dr. Kutcher.”
“Johan told me he’s gotten better over the course of the summer. He’s pushed himself hard to test it. So far, so good.”
As Ansar Khan notes, even if Franzen is cleared at camp, how he handles contact drills and preseason games will go a long way to determining whether he’ll suit up for his 11th NHL season.
“Obviously, there’s a history of concussions. I can’t read the future,” said Holland. “I expect he’ll take his physical and pass it and resume his career. As he skates and trains every day, if he has no setbacks — I don’t know why he would — I’m expecting his body is going to tell him.”
Franzen trained hard towards the end of the season for a return in the playoffs, but admitted in May that he suffered a setback.
U.S. Federal Court judge Susan Nelson ordered the NHL to turn over “reams of data about injuries and concussions” as part of an ongoing lawsuit, TSN’s Rick Westhead reports.
Approximately 80 former players are involved in the legal matter.
Here’s what Nelson wrote in her ruling, via Westhead:
“The Court finds that the (NHL’s) blanket application of the physician-patient privilege – protecting all medical data from disclosure – is inapplicable here,” Nelson wrote.
“The clubs are ordered to produce any internal reports, studies, analyses and databases in their possession (whether initiated by the U.S. clubs, NHL, or retained researchers) for the purpose of studying concussions in de-identified form. The U.S. clubs shall produce any responsive correspondence and/or emails between themselves, themselves and the NHL, or with any research or other professional about the study of concussions.”
Players names will not be shared in this process. The NHL reportedly estimates that producing such reams of data could cost about $13.5 million. Commissioner Gary Bettman was deposed for eight hours on Friday regarding the lawsuit, although his testimony is “under seal for now.”
For more, read the full report from Westhead at TSN.
Defenseman Patrick Wey worked his way through Boston College and made his NHL debut with the Washington Capitals on Oct. 7, 2013 at the age of 22. After suffering multiple concussions though, he’s decided to hang up his skates, per the Capitals’ official website’s Mike Vogel.
He sustained his first concussion in what proved to be his final NHL game on March 30, 2014 during a fight with Predators forward Rich Clune. The fact that an experienced combatant like Clune agreed to spar with the rookie didn’t sit well with the Capitals.
“They had a little tangle before the fight and they were talking to each other a bit and Weysie seemed to be a willing combatant,” Troy Brouwer said at the time. “But at the same point guys who are known to be fighters, they have to have enough respect to pick their spots to know when guys are able to fight fighters.”
For his part, Clune reached out to Wey after the incident.
Wey was concussed again in Oct. 24 after absorbing a high hit from Jay Rosehill. He wasn’t able to return from that injury.
TAMPA — It’s not a concussion.
But other than ruling that possibility out, Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell isn’t quite sure what’s been ailing him.
“I don’t know exactly what it is,” he said today. “It’s something that comes and goes. It could come after I’m done talking to you. I don’t know.”
Bickell was forced to miss Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final with what the club called an “upper-body” injury. He also played just 4:22 in Game 7 of the Western Conference Final.
“We did all those concussion tests and everything was clear,” he said. “It’s just a frustrating thing to come up this time of year.”
Bickell practiced today and hopes to play tomorrow; however, his status remains unclear, whether he’s healthy or not.
That’s because Kris Versteeg drew into the lineup for Bickell on Wednesday and impressed coach Joel Quenneville.
“I liked his game,” Quenneville said. “He had good pace to his game. Good energy.”
Bickell skated in Marcus Kruger’s spot on the fourth line in practice today. Quenneville said Kruger was resting.
The Detroit Red Wings are operating under the assumption that Johan Franzen will be fully healthy by the start of training camp.
“I’m told he’s working out every day,” GM Ken Holland told MLive yesterday. “The expectation is that over the course of the summer, he’s going to be healthy.
“I expect to see him in training camp. I expect to see him playing hockey next year. Until I hear otherwise, that’s how I’m going to proceed.”
Franzen missed the entire second half of this past season with a concussion, finishing 2014-15 with seven goals and 15 assists in 33 games.
Earlier this month, the 35-year-old winger said he was feeling better, but remained unsure if he’d be able to keep playing.
Franzen has suffered multiple concussions throughout his career. He remains under contract to the Wings through 2019-20.