Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Gaborik To See Doctor Today, Timeline on Concussion, Tonight's Lines

Rather than jump back and forth between beat writers today, Jesse Spector gets all the credit for the lineup news.  We knew that Marian Gaborik was going to be out for the game and will miss the road trip.  Jesse reports that the lines in practice looked like this:

The first two lines are exactly what I think most people would have expected considering both of these lines have had success in the past and the Stepan line has been the Rangers best one since the calendar turned to 2011.  As is usually the case with the lines there are lines that make little sense to me, but then I have to remind myself that John Tortorella is the coach and the lines will likely be different by the end of the first period.  Personally I have seen very little from Prospal and Christensen of late and would have just left the Avery, Boyle, Prust line together as the third line.
Ruslan Fedotenko took part in practice today, but will not play tonight and he will be joined by Steve Eminger who will be a healthy scratch for 10th time in the last 11 games.
In terms of Marian Gaborik and his concussion there is no update on his actual condition, but he will see a specialist this afternoon in Manhattan.  What the Rangers did seek to do today though was to bring some clarity to the concussion timeline which to this point has been a little blurry.  The belief is that the hit which Gaborik was initially injured during the game against Pittsburgh on Sunday February 13th. 
The rest of the timeline is as follows based on reporting from Andrew Gross:
- Last Tuesday, Gaborik said he wasn’t feeling right. At the time, the team and Gaborik thought he might have the flu.
- Thursday, Gaborik played against the Kings without symptoms.
- Friday, Gaborik plays against the Devils without symptoms, though he’s held without a shot for the first time this season.
- Sunday, Gaborik plays 4:39 with one shot in the first period. Tortorella wants to show him some video during the first intermission. At that time, Gaborik tells Tortorella he’s having trouble concentrating, so Tortorella sends him right to trainer Jim Ramsey and the decision is made to shut Gaborik down.
This accounting might strike some as questionable since there is no memorable shot to pinpoint when he suffered the concussion, but there is a level plausibility to the timeline of events.  Concussions can manifest differently in different people and nausea, headache, fatigue can all be among them and resemble the flu.  The issue I would have is why not check just to be sure even if there was no memorable headshot to make them think concussion? 
The fact that Gaborik displayed no symptoms through the Kings and Devils games is curious to then have them manifest themselves a full week after the believed initially point of injury.  For now you certainly have to give the benefit of the doubt to the team and the player, but just hope for more caution to be exercised in checking even if it seems excessive and unnecessary for things like concussions.
There might be a timeline on his recovery following the game tonight.