Florida, The Flu And Jagr

Florida, The Flu And Jagr
Chris Wassel

We talk about it on the Atlantic Division Injury Report, but the flu is still around like an unwelcome house guest. Some players have actually had it two or three times according to NHL sources. What is happening? Why is it happening? Are some players just more likely to get sick because they had the mumps? There are lots of wrinkles to this and none of them are good.

There are lots of scenarios that could play out but one is the most obvious and the most fearful. Oh poor Florida, you are the latest victim of the flu bug running wild in your locker room. Talk about a tough break at the worst possible time.


The Florida Flu

First off, what is the flu? The Florida Flu is just a figurative name but it does seem the flu lingers in warmer climates just because you travel from all sorts of locations. It makes a lot of sense when you think about it.

Fever and chills are the main symptoms of concern as it seems like there is a flu that has basically like a lighter version of the normal flu out there. There is also the case where some athlete’s have better immune systems than others. If you have ever wondered why some players get over the flu like it is nothing while others are out a couple weeks in some cases. There you go!

Thanks to the website for the handy information. The flu virus can turn into so many other worse illnesses if not checked. The flu even can mimic the dreaded Ebola virus. No one on the Florida Panthers has Ebola but this is just to let you know to take the flu seriously if you or someone you know has it. The fact that it is March and we are still talking about this is not good.

It does seem that more people have the flu in Florida because of the traveling, change in weather, and naturally going from the warm weather outside to skating on ice.

As of now, who has the flu on the Florida Panthers? It is believed that only Willie MitchellEric Gudbranson and Jaromir Jagr still have the virus. However, several other players had symptoms and the possibility it could spread has Florida players on edge. A similar outbreak has toured several teams’ locker rooms, most notably the Minnesota Wild and Ottawa Senators both had pretty long outbreaks.


The Old Man And The Illness

A widely known reason why Jagr had concern was the last time he will ill, it took a few weeks to recover and he did get sick again. The same thing happened to Martin Havlat. When you think about it, the right winger contracted this when in New Jersey. Some argued he had the mumps or even shingles but the forward was definitely ill for an extended period of time. It never did seem to get fully better either. Jagr was listed as questionable for Saturday’s game at first and has already missed one game on Thursday.  The good news is he will be able to play on Saturday night according to the latest update.

Unfortunately, Jagr could probably get sick again. That is the thing. Take it from someone who gets chronic sinus infections in the Spring. If you think this is not possible then you could not be more wrong. He was also quite lucky this time around that it did not persist and turn into something else. Florida could ill afford to lose their right winger for any more time because of the playoff race they are in for the final wildcard spot.

This really was not an ideal time for the future Hall Of Famer to get the flu. Then again, no time really is. The thing is this. Flu season really is not over. That’s a pretty scary realization. What may be more evil is that Spring is just around the corner. Flowers and allergies and all sorts of pollen will wreak havoc on players. Will it be as dangerous as the flu? No. Can it be almost as annoying? Yes.

Jaromir Jagr was lucky this time. There was no way Florida could afford missing a few weeks like he did earlier in the year for New Jersey. He has also had it several times in the last couple years with recurrences. Now it is hopefully past him as Florida has a big stretch run and they need Jagr every step of the way.

Chris Wassel

Never stop learning! That has always been my philosophy in life. It applies to hockey writing so well as new challenges are something to strive for. I have been a fantasy hockey writer way back when it wasn’t quite so cool, covered the Devils for a variety of places and still do, have a small hockey site of my own, and even write about all things NHL, AHL, ECHL, KHL, etc. Usually I am first asked who I don’t write for. For Today’s Slapshot, I will be covering the Atlantic Division.

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