Practice Buzz: Mats Zuccarello out for Game 7, holding out hope for Stanley Cup Final
Mats Zuccarello skated before practice in a non-contact jersey. As I wrote this morning, he needed to be cleared for contact today if there was any chance of playing in Game 7 tomorrow.
Zuccarello on the ice wearing a yellow non-contact jersey. #NYR pic.twitter.com/Nx2Q4EUzpx
— Mathias Ask (@MathiasAsk) May 28, 2015
Now the question becomes, will he be ready for the Stanley Cup Final should the Rangers advance next Wednesday?
For that, I asked Dr. Mark Herceg, a neuropsychologist who is Westchester County’s Commissioner of Mental Health and an avid Rangers fan about Zuccarello’s injury. Dr. Herceg explained, “Zuccarello took a hit to the left side of his head, above the ear that may have impacted his balance and caused vertigo and headaches.” When asked about recovery, Dr Herceg stated “it’s normal for symptoms to last between 4 to 6 weeks.”
Mats’ injury took place on April 25th and he has missed the team’s last 13 games. Should the Rangers win Friday night, game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final would be 5 weeks and 4 days from that date. Game 2 would take place on Saturday night and be 6 weeks exactly.
Still, we need to be cautious as each head injury is a unique case. The positives continue each time Zuccarello takes the ice and if Dr. Herceg’s assessment is close, we may just see Mats Zuccarello again this season.
Of course, that also depends on the Rangers winning Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final. That’s another hope in and of itself.