Friday, September 15, 2006

12 Days Until Draft Day

Training camps are opening up all around the league today and the news is starting to flood in about injuries and such. There are quite a few long-term injuries that may concern some who are beginning to look at their player lists already.

Don't expect to see Tim Connolly on many pool lists on draft day. His concussion symptoms are still lingering and the talented centre will be shelved until he gets clearance from doctors to start skating again. His indefinite status is a major turn-off, unless you're a huge gambler who will risk the first few weeks for a possible big remainder of the year.

The Hurricanes have already been bitten by the injury bug before their defense of the Cup has even started. Frank Kaberle will be out until January after shoulder surgery. Cory Stillman should be out until late November or early December, also after shoulder surgery. The load towards the Cup was much heavier on some shoulders and not on others, by the looks of things.

The Blackhawks will be missing a couple guys at the start of the season. Newly-acquired backup goaltender Patrick Lalime will miss the first couple months of the season. It was found that he will require back surgery soon and will miss all that time. Blue-chip prospect, Cam Barker, will miss at least a month after fracturing his ankle in camp already. Barker, a promising defenseman, will have to wait until November before he gets to show his stuff again with the big club.

All you Jordan Leopold fans will have to wait a month before you see him in Avalanche colours on the ice. Leopold underwent hernia surgery and will not be skating through camp and the first month of the season.

Potential backup goalie, Pekka Rinne, will not be backing up Tomas Vokoun or have the opportunity to try until December. Rinne, a player who has flown somewhat under the radar a bit, dislocated his shoulder and will sit for quite a while until it heals.

Jason Wiemer will be sitting out until February after knee surgery. But it's nothing that you would actually consider come draft day. Actually, if you read past "Jason Wiemer," you must have a deep pool to care.

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