Tyler Seguin has made an insanely quick recovery for the Dallas Stars — what should have been a three to six week absence barely hit the three week point before he was back on the ice — but he’s being smart about it.
According to Adam Kimelman of NHL.com, Seguin isn’t putting up any pretenses; he’s openly admitted that he’s not going to be anywhere close to 100 percent for another two or three months. He’s determined to do the best he can, but there’s been no insistence that he’s totally fine again — a stark contrast to the league-wise trend of players pushing through or covering up injuries in order to get back into the lineup.
It’s a departure from the traditional ‘hockey player’ mentality; while most guys admit they openly admire teammates who come forward with jaw-dropping on-ice battles, Seguin is out in the open with his admittance that he doesn’t feel up to standard yet. It’s obviously done very little to affect his play — fans watched on in amazement as he scored two goals in his first game back with Dallas — but this gives the coaches and his teammates an opportunity to keep an eye out for potential warning signs. It may be less ‘tough’ of him than playing through a handful of broken ribs and a punctured lung, but it’s also admirable in its own right.
In another Central Division lineup, though, a veteran blue liner is also being closely monitored to return to play.
The St. Louis Blues dealt prospect Maxim Letunov for Arizona Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek and a conditional third round pick, with the third rounder only being awarded to St. Louis if Michalek didn’t get back on the ice this season. He’s been dealing with lingering concussion issues, and hasn’t skated for a couple of weeks now.
According to Andy Strickland of CBS St. Louis, Michalek informed Strickland that he’d like to get at least one full practice in before joining the Blues lineup — but the team’s confirmation that both he and injured defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk have been out on the ice over the past few days. Shattenkirk’s return projection doesn’t have him rejoining the St. Louis lineup for another couple of weeks, but this suggests that Michalek could make his debut in a Blues uniform soon enough.