Even on the “hockey players are tough” scale, recovering from a skull fracture and brain contusion is pretty astonishing.
It sounds like New York Rangers winger Mats Zuccarello is pulling that off.
Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault told NHL.com on Friday that Zuccarello should be ready for training camp in September.
“I’ve heard he’s 100 percent from our medical staff,” Vigneault said. “He’s been cleared to skate and have contact. He’s made a full recovery so we’re very pleased about that. He’s a big part of our team.”
A Ryan McDonagh shot hit the 27-year-old in the head during Game 5 of the Rangers’ first-round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Here’s a video clip of that very unfortunate moment:
To little surprise, the small scorer didn’t return to the playoffs, although it appeared as though he gave it multiple tries.
That’s a courageous showing considering symptoms that included the following: loss of speech, brain bleeding and a three-day hospital stay.
Seriously, when you consider all he went through, let’s hope that he’s genuinely 100 percent before he returns to the ice. If so, it’s a truly remarkable recovery, even by hockey standards.