The Pittsburgh Penguins have a major star dealing with concussion symptoms and this time it’s not Sidney Crosby.
Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports defending NHL MVP Evgeni Malkin is dealing with symptoms including a “severe headache and mild disorientation” after his wicked collision with Florida’s Erik Gudbranson last night. They’re not anticipating that he’ll play tomorrow night and have no timetable for recovery.
This news is crushing for the Penguins for a multitude of reasons with the biggest being they know how long these kinds of issues can linger after seeing Crosby go through what he did for the better part of two seasons. While Crosby missed time, Malkin (and Jordan Staal) were able to lift their games so the team didn’t suffer badly without him.
Now it’s on Sid the Kid and Brandon Sutter to do the same for them while Malkin recovers, however long that turns out to be.
The Colorado Avalanche will get a big boost this weekend as captain Gabriel Landeskog returns to the lineup for the first time in 11 games.
Landeskog, 20, will travel with the team for its three-game Western road swing (Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose) and play Saturday at the Staples Center against the Kings.
“I feel good out there,” Landeskog said on Friday. “Today was the first practice with the guys and I finally got out of that pumpkin jersey — I was extremely excited and eager to get back in the lineup and help the guys out.”
The ‘pumpkin jersey’ is in reference to the orange non-contact jersey Landeskog wore for most of the week.
He doffed it on Friday and participated fully with his Avlanche teammates in all drills — contact ones included — the final step in returning from a concussion suffered on Jan. 26 on a big hit from San Jose defenseman Brad Stuart.
Here’s video of Landeskog addressing reporters following practice, courtesy the Avalanche website:
Corey Crawford is ready for action.
That’s the word out of Chicago on Thursday as the ‘Hawks goalie announced he’s been cleared to return after sitting out the last three games.
Crawford was out with an upper-body injury — as to what the injury was and when it happened, well, your guess is as good as any.
The 28-year-old ‘tender wouldn’t tell reporters whether he had a concussion or not. Earlier, head coach Joel Quenneville offered shifty responses upon being asked when Crawford got hurt, saying it was either in last Tuesday’s game versus Anaheim or during last Thursday’s practice.
In related news, forward Marian Hossa returned to practice today after leaving Tuesday’s game against Vancouver with an apparent head injury due to a collision with Canucks forward Jannik Hansen.
According to the Chicago Tribune’s Chris Kuc, Hossa “passed some concussion tests today and will undergo more tomorrow” before deciding if he’ll play Friday against the Sharks.
As for Crawford, he won’t be returning to the pipes tomorrow night when the ‘Hawks take on the Sharks at the United Center. Ray Emery will make his fourth straight start.
Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog took part in Colorado’s morning skate on Wednesday — his sixth consecutive day of skating — and spoke publicly for the first time since suffering a concussion on Jan. 26.
l”It’s been feeling better and better,” Landeskog told the Denver Post. “The hands aren’t quite there yet and the feet aren’t quite there, but I’m working on it and feeling better every day.”
The 20-year-old returned to Avalanche practice earlier this week wearing an orange non-contact jersey, but may be able to resume full contact by week’s end.
As for a return date — Colorado plays tonight against St. Louis, then departs for a three-game California road trip over the weekend, so it’s possible the captain could be back in the lineup while the team’s out West.
And as for concussion itself, Landeskog says his recovery is a process.
He’s had no issues with memory, nausea or dizziness, but did suffer some headaches, head pressure and light sensitivity.
Landeskog’shad a chance to watch the hit that concussed him — a big bodycheck by San Jose’s Brad Stuart in a 4-1 loss to the Sharks — and said he was at fault for the collision.
“I didn’t keep it up as much as I should have,” he told the Post. “Watching the video again kind of strengthened my opinion that I had my head down.”
Some tough news out of Carolina on Wednesday as the Hurricanes announced Jeff Skinner would be sidelined for an undetermined length of time with a concussion.
Skinner, 20, was hurt during last Thursday’s 3-1 win over Toronto. According to Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News and Observer, Skinner took a couple of hard hits against the Leafs and also went headfirst into the boards, though he reportedly felt fine after the game, even practicing on Friday.
Over the weekend, however, things got worse — Carolina’s second-leading scorer didn’t practice on Sunday or travel to Montreal for Monday’s game against the Canadiens (a 3-0 loss).
He subsequently missed the last two days of practice.
This latest development is going to cause a lot of concern within the Carolina organization, as Skinner missed 16 games last season because of a concussion.
The 2011 Calder Trophy winner also signed a six-year, $34 million contract extension with the ‘Canes last August, a deal that will keep him in Carolina until 2019.