The New Jersey Devils have had the last few days off after Monday night's loss in Pittsburgh. They will end their short road trip tomorrow when they travel to Ottawa for tomorrow's game. Head Coach John MacLean has been using this free time for practice and skating drills (here's the FanShot with some opinions on the bag skate). Who knows if it will actually help the Devils play better on the ice in a game, but this free time does heal up some minor injuries (bumps and bruises).
Martin Brodeur made his return after missing seven consecutive games, he dressed as the back-up against the Penguins. Mike McKenna returned to Albany. Marty said he's ready to play against the Senators; it will be up to MacLean on whether he or Johan Hedberg will get the start.
After the jump is the list of the players who have been out, and it's finally getting shorter.
Bryce Salvador - Head/Concussion - Salvador was hit a couple times in a preseason game against the Philadelphia Flyers. He was sent for tests, and it was determined he suffered a concussion and will be out indefinitely. This initially helped the Devils solve their cap issues when he was put on LTIR. On Nov. 16th, Salvador was spotted at The Rock, yet told Gulitti he's still not even allowed to exercise, but that has changed recently. Salvador has started to work out on a stationary bike. This is a big step for Salvador, who is still a long ways from returning. Until his symptoms fully dissipate, we won't be seeing him. I wouldn't expect him in a game until mid-January or even February.
Zach Parise - Torn Right Knee - Parise tore his meniscus in his right knee when he collided with a player against the Los Angeles Kings. It's been an ailing injury that began hurting him in training camp. He's been placed on LTIR on Nov. 12th retroactive to Oct. 30th. He had surgery on Nov. 2nd. His timetable of 3 months hasn't changed and he is expected back early February. From the TSN crew (during the Flames/Devils game), he will wear a cast for a week or so more, then begin rehabilitation baring any setbacks.
Jacob Josefson - Torn Left Thumb - Josefson tore a ligament in his left hand against the San Jose Sharks on Oct. 27th. He was slashed on the hand and then fell on it, though it can not be determined what actually caused the tear. He's scheduled to miss 6 to 8 weeks, which would be around the new year. He was spotted at the Rock with Parise in the team suite, perhaps taking a nap? Per Gulitti, Josefson had his cast and pins removed and will start therapy. He has not been cleared to skate yet.
Matt Taormina - Sprained Left Ankle - The rookie defenseman twisted his ankle in practice on Nov. 14th. He's been out since, and hasn't skated. Per Gulitti, he's been placed on injured reserve retroactive to his last game played (Nov. 12th vs. the Edmonton Oilers). Lamoriello confirmed it's a high ankle sprain and he's waiting for clearance from the doctors to begin skating.
Mark Fraser - Broken Left Hand - Fraser suffered his injury against Buffalo on Oct. 13th, and the next day he found out he broke his hand, would need surgery to insert a pin, and would wear a cast for 4 to 6 weeks. Fraser had to stay off the ice and couldn't work out for a period of time because he couldn't sweat (because of the pin and cast). Fraser joined Salvador on the bike and is on schedule (8 weeks). His cast was removed over a week ago and wears a temporary one when he is not exercising. He was expected to skate sometime last week, and has been so on his own.
Anssi Salmela - Torn Right Knee - This was an off-season ACL injury that was reported in September that he was months behind. That turns out to be shorter than expected. He began skating in late October. His first full practice was Nov. 11th. He's expecting to be back in December, which is a little ahead of schedule. He's wants to be careful before getting into a game to risk further injury. Anssi was to see a doctor last week, who may clear him to play. He's still waiting clearance and he will most likely play a game in Albany before returning to New Jersey. Salmela was sent to Albany for a conditioning stint. He can stay down there for up to two weeks. He hasn't played in any game since his injury, so once he's back into the swing of things, we'll see him activated.
The only updates have been on Brodeur, who is back, and Salmela, who is back but in Albany compared to Sunday's Injury Report. Taormina and Fraser are next on the list to return, but it's not determined when they will come back.
Express your concern about the injuries in the comments. Who should be sent down when Fraser and Salmela eventual return? What should the new lines/pairings look like? Who do the Devils need the most that is expected back soon? Thanks for reading.