Willie Mitchell weathered a hit from Chris Neil with 3:22 remaining in the first period of Saturday’s game against the Ottawa Senators before leaving the ice and heading down the tunnel to the Kings’ dressing room. He returned to play a healthy dose of minutes in the second period but did not play in the third period of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win. Late in the game, the injury was described as an “upper-body injury” and that his return was “uncertain.”
It was noted by the LA Times yesterday that Mitchell was sick and remained at the team hotel instead of busing to the United Center to take part in Sunday’s game against the Chicago Blackhawks. Mitchell did not join the team on the ice for this morning’s practice.
“He worked out today and he didn’t skate, so we’ll see how he is tomorrow,” Sutter said.
When asked about what caused the illness, Sutter referenced the hit he took on Saturday.
“He got hit. It was nothing. It was like an upper-body, and it was not serious, and then when we went to have our meeting he was sick, so we just told him to stay at the hotel,” he said.
Nausea and vomiting are among the symptoms of concussions, and because Sutter referenced the the hit when asked to expand on the nature of his illness, it is possible to deduce that the 36-year-old defenseman could be battling some concussion-like symptoms.
Mitchell has four assists and a plus-6 rating in 33 games this season.