Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley is concerned that young forward Markus Granlund might have suffered a concussion during Friday’s 3-0 exhibition defeat against the Vancouver Canucks, the Calgary Sun reports.
The Flames might limp a bit into the beginning of the 2014-15 season if this pattern holds and rapid progress isn’t made. David Jones will miss Sunday’s preseason game with a lower-body injury while Ladislav Smid is still recovering from what sounds like a pretty nasty tooth infection.
There is a bright side, though; underrated center Mikael Backlund reportedly resumed skating on Saturday. That said, it’s too early to get too excited about the useful 25-year-old pivot:
“It’s encouraging,” Hartley told the Calgary Sun. “Right now he’s so far behind, we’re going to ramp him but, but at the same time, we’ll be careful with him. We’ll try to get him ready for Game 1. We got some good news and you should see him (practising fully) soon.”
Backlund is considered a diamond in the rough along the same lines as defenseman Mark Giordano in Calgary, so if the team wants to surprise some people this coming season, having a healthy Backlund would make a difference.