First of all, the news of the day, but I’ve confirmed through different avenues that left wing Andrew Brunette is playing on at least a partially torn right ACL and maybe a fully torn ACL.
Are you kidding me? Andrew Brunette, all 36 years of him, is playing NHL caliber hockey on a torn ACL? Let me tell you, folks, this is no joke of an injury. Tearing your ACL makes starting, stopping, and changing direction painful. Not that that happens in hockey very often.
Russo reports that the guy can barely walk, and yet he is out there skating every night on on leg that needs to be surgerically repaired. Add this to the fact that Owen Nolan flew out to San Jose and demanded to be in the line up despite a broken toe and yaking his guts out on the bench yet continuing to play through the game.
From Russo's story for tomorrow's paper, Bruno says this:
"It's the same approach I take to every hockey game I play. I want to play. I'm part of this team and I want to help this team win. I would sell myself short if I didn't try to help this team. You've got to look yourself in the mirror, and if I can get out there, I can help this team."
Wild fans should be paying very close attention, because these types of players are fading fast. The number of players willing to leave it all on the line for a team that seems to not care in the slightest is dwindling. Someday you will all be telling children and grandchildren how you watch the Irish God of War skate with a broken toe and barfing on the bench between shifts, or how you watched Andrew Brunette skate over half a season with a torn ACL. The people listening to your story will likely chalk it up to your senility, as professional hockey players will have become prima donna belly achers like most other professional athletes.
Even Risebrough agrees (and gets in his thinly veiled shot at Gaborik):
Risebrough said Brunette and Owen Nolan, 37, who is playing on a broken toe, are "dying breeds."
"There's too many players now whose expectations are being 100 percent, and that's impossible. Every time you play, there's wear and tear. Bruno and Nolan are great influences for our younger guys."
Live it up wild fans, you have two of the toughest SOB's you will ever meet skating in front of you.
Oh, and then there's that guy Gaborik who can't play because he is hurt. If there are any doctors out there in the Wilderness readership, I would very much like to know some details. If Brunette can play on a torn ACL, is it too much to expect Gaborik to play with a torn labrum?
I'm just asking.