One of the many dangers for NHL players skating is the high risk of injury and lack of quality medical care seen in North America. I am glad to see that the owners aren’t in any rush to get their players back inside their rinks while they are getting injured trying to earn a living during the lockout. Last week, Valtteri Flippula injured his knee in his native Finland and can be out for 6-8 weeks. And over the weekend, Philadelphia’s Claude Giroux suffered what appears to be a neck injury when he was on the wrong end of a check to the head in a game in Germany.
There is a lot to read in this because Giroux said in an interview with the Philadelphia Daily News that it is just a little neck injury and to not look too much into it. Reports state he is in Atlanta to visit Dr. Ted Carrick. Carrick is the same doctor who treated Sidney Crosby when he went through his recent concussion spells. His agent, Pat Brisson, told the Daily News that it is just for precautionary reasons and doesn’t believe it is serious.
Regardless, Giroux is an important part of the Flyers and any injury that will keep him out of an orange and white uniform is detrimental. He being in the United States and not Berlin is enough to be concerned because if it wasn’t such a big deal he would have seen a team specialist in Germany instead of flying thousands of miles to North America. He did undergo standard testing in Germany but still didn’t feel well enough to continue playing, therefore the trip to Atlanta was necessary. Also concerning Flyers fans is that he has already suffered two concussions in his career: missing five games during the 2008-09 season and another four during in 2010-11.
He’s playing with Danny Briere while in Germany and the two have provided star power over there. Giroux has played in nine games and has scored 19 points. If he is to return to Germany he could return as soon as the weekend.