Jan Levine’s ‘On the Mend’ report for 2/17/17

The Department of Player Safety totally dropped the puck – again – by garnering just a six-game suspension on the vicious spear levied by Detroit winger Gustav Nyqvist’s stick-to-the-face of Minnesota defenseman Jared Spurgeon. The NHL failed big by ignoring the possible ramifications of what could have happened if the stick was just a few inches higher, as well as the intent to injure.

By Jan Levine, PSN Hockey Analyst

Jan Levine’s ‘On the Mend’ report is a detailed account of the key players out, recovering and returning from injury around the NHL.

Let’s take a look at the Nyqvist suspension as well as the other one handed down to Anaheim center Antoine Vermette and an update on the other 29 players that make this week’s list.

For more in-depth coverage of the NHL tune in to Prime Sports Hockey as we explore the top headlines, give full analysis, picks and commentary on all 30 teams around North America.

INJURY REPORT: February 17, 2017

-Buffalo/D Jake McCabe…shoulder injury on 1/20; returned to action on 2/4.

-Columbus/D David Savard…back spasms; missed eight of nine games until he returned last Saturday.

-ANA/C Antoine Vermette…received 10-game suspension for striking an official.

-ANA/D Sami Vatanen…suffered lower-body injury on 2/3 and was placed on IR just yesterday, but he is expected to return any day now.

-Colorado/D Tyson Barrie…lower-body injury; out since 1/17; did return to action on 1/31, but after playing in just two games he was out of action again; returned to active duty on 2/12.

-Dallas/C Jason Spezza…undisclosed injury; placed on IR 2/3; activated on Tuesday.

-Detroit/RW Gustav Nyqvist…received six-game suspension for sticking Jared Spurgeon in the face on 2/12.

-Detroit/C Frans Nielsen…shoulder injury; placed on IR 2/6; activated 2/11.

-Detroit/G Jimmy Howard…sprained MCL on 12/20; moved to long-term injury reserve list on 1/19; left AHL game on 2/8 against Manitoba after feeling a “tweak” in his injured leg and then suffered another setback on 2/13; no timetable set for a return to parent club.

-EDM/D Darnell Nurse…hip injury suffered on 12/1; after surgery on 12/12 he was expected to miss most of the season, but returned to practice with team on 2/11.

-LA/G Jonathan Quick…groin injury; has been out since season opening contest in San Jose on 10/12; now expected out until early-March.

-MIN/D Jonas Brodin…broke finger on 1/17; skating now so about a week away from return.

-MIN/D Mathew Dumba…lower body injury and illness since 2/12; expected out through end of the month.

-Montreal/RW Brendan Gallagher…underwent surgery on 1/6 to repair a fractured left hand and was to be sidelined eight weeks, but progressed faster than expected and was activated on Monday.

-NY Islanders/D Travis Hamonic…knee injury; out since 1/11; considered week-to-week; skated on his own before practice Thursday.

-Ottawa/G Craig Anderson…missed two months with wife’s illness; returned to action last Saturday with a shutout win against the Islanders.

-Philadelphia/C Travis Konecny…lower body injury on 2/7; will miss the next 4-6 weeks.

-Pittsburgh/RW Bryan Rust…arm injury on 2/9; placed on IR 2/14.

-Pittsburgh/LW Carl Hagelin…suffered concussion on 2/4; placed on IR 2/12; skated with team yesterday and could return as early as Sunday.

-Pittsburgh/C Evgeni Malkin…knee injury; placed on IR 1/31; returned to action Tuesday with a goal and assist.

-Pittsburgh/LW Conor Sheary…upper body injured on 1/31;  placed on IR 2/3; slated to be out 4-6 weeks, but now skating with team and could return earlier than expected.

-St. Louis/C Paul Stastny…lower-body injury on 2/9; placed on IR 2/14.

-Tampa Bay/C Steven Stamkos…lateral meniscus tear surgery on 11/16; due back in mid-March but could miss the rest of the season if Tampa falls out of the race.

Tampa Bay/RW Ryan Callahan…reoccurring hip injury; placed on IR 1/17; will miss at least four weeks, but could eventually be shut down for the season if he continues to show no signs of improvement.

-Toronto/D Cody Franson…suffered bone bruise in foot on 2/9; was to miss 2-3 weeks, but could return to action this weekend.

-Vancouver/LW Sven Baertschi…left game on 2/7 with a concussion; placed on IR 2/12; considered day-to-day now.

WAS/LW Andre Burakovsky…hand injury on 2/9; out until mid-March the earliest.

-WPG/G Ondrej Pavelec…suffered concussion on 2/7; placed on IR 2/14; traveling with team but not yet ready to play.