Drafted 21st overall at the 2014 NHL Entry Draft, Robby Fabbri is one of the growing list of NHL rookies who has already recorded his first career NHL goal — but while the St. Louis Blues are likely eager to see what the 19 year old Missassauga native can do, they’ll have to wait a bit longer to get him back on the ice.
Fabbri was taken out of his second NHL game after recording just shy of four minutes of ice time in the contest, exiting with an upper body injury later determined as an elbow to the head. The team is now reporting that it’s a concussion holding the rookie out of games, and there’s no timetable for how quickly he’ll be able to return to the ice.
This isn’t the first concussion of the season. Both Alexander Wennberg of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Brad Marchand of the Boston Bruins are sitting out games with no clear recovery timetable for concussions of their own; while it’s encouraging to see teams taking this kind of cautionary approach to head injuries (in other words, teams aren’t listing set return dates for concussion-based injuries), it’s still concerning to see three players already down for the count.
Fabbri himself is no stranger to injury, of course. Last year, Fabbri recorded 51 points in just 30 games with the OHL’s Guelph Storm due to a high ankle sprain that caused him to miss parts of the World Junior Championships, as well. He was able to finish out the year with Guelph, though, and ultimately joined the AHL’s Chicago Wolves in time to record 4 points in 3 regular season games with the club; the hope was that this year, he’d be able to dazzle with St. Louis straight out of the gate.
Obviously, it’s a letdown to see that Fabbri won’t be able to play for the indeterminate future for the Central Division Blues, who are coming off a 3-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Saturday. The team is already down forward Patrik Berglund, who is on long-term injured reserve while he recovers from shoulder surgery performed during the off-season — it was even suggested that Fabbri would serve as the perfect short-term replacement for Berglund in the lineup to prevent the Blues from seeing much scoring drop-off without the centre/winger.
Despite this disappointment, though, the number one concern should be letting Fabbri fully recover.