One of the rites of spring is for NHL coaches, who worked so diligently during the season — and especially during the playoffs — to guard injury news, to loosen up and talk about what ailments their players had been dealing with. Terry Murray did that today, and in a couple cases, it impacts players who might have been otherwise going to the IIHF World Championships, which start next week. First, Murray talks about some of the playoff injuries…
MURRAY: “Harrold broke his wrist, and that’s why he came out of the lineup. Doughty has been nursing quite a few injuries, actually. The biggest problem that he has right now, probably, is the sprained thumb, sprained wrist. I know Quick, he got fell on there — I don’t remember exactly what game it was — in his crease and had a slight issue with his shoulder. Clune is not a structural problem. As I mentioned the day after it happened, it’s a stinger. It’s just going to take some time to back away and get through the rehab in the next few weeks. There’s more guys. I can’t think of it off the top of my head. But being banged up is a good thing. You’ve got to pay a price in order to play the game. You go through real hard times, difficult games, and you put yourself in tough situations to score and in tough areas, and you’re going to come away, at the end of the game, with ice bags on. That’s all part of it.”
The Kings have a handful of players in contention for spots on various World Championships teams. Murray said he thought Alexander Frolov would be participating. Jack Johnson (USA) is in, but Drew Doughty (Canada) and Dustin Brown (USA) are out, and Michal Handzus (Slovakia) is undecided. It had been reported by TSN that Wayne Simmonds (Canada) is interested in playing, but so that’s a possibility. Here’s what the other guys had to say today, about their World Championships availability.
JOHNSON: “Yeah, I’ll be going.”
DOUGHTY: “No, I’m not going to go to World Championships. I’ve got a banged-up injury here. My hand is messed up. I messed up my hand in that series, so I’m going to take off the World Championships. … Nothing big. We don’t know what it is yet. We have to get an MRI and stuff like that, so we’ll see what happens. It was Game 1 that it happened. I just kept playing on it. The more I play on it, the worse it gets, so that’s why I’m taking off World Championships.”
BROWN: “I’m not sure if I’ve been invited yet, but I think I’m going to pass. It’s a long year, and I might possibly get some stuff done with my teeth. It’s pretty extensive (work), major bone graft and stuff. I lost my teeth, however many years ago, and I’m starting to lose the bone. It’s one of those things. I don’t know the whole exact science of it, but there’s one surgery, and then it has to heal for five or six months, and then another surgery. It kind of takes me two or three years to do it. With the way our schedule is built, it’s going to take a few years to get it all fixed. So I figured I’d get it started now. … I had one surgery a few years ago and it didn’t go well, so hopefully it will work out better this time.”
HANDZUS: “I got called, and I told them I just need a couple days. It’s been disappointing, so from my experience I know that maybe in the next couple days I’m going to feel differently. I don’t know. it’s a lot to think over, so I don’t know. A couple days, and I’ll know after that.”