Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Bouchard talks about his latest concussion; Seto apologizes; Harding sick

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild news, Wild practice Updated: January 11, 2012 - 5:15 PM

Update: Matt Hackett has been recalled in case Josh Harding doesn't feel well in the morning. Harding is flying to Chicago tonight to meet up with the team, but it was easy to get Hackett here because the Aeros play tonight in Grand Rapids.

Pierre-Marc Bouchard this morning said it all started Dec. 13 in Winnipeg after Zach Bogosian checked him face-first into the boards.

He broke his nose and felt some headaches, but after taking a week off and missing two games, Bouchard felt "decent enough to play."

Then, with 58 seconds left in Vancouver one week ago, Chris Higgins stripped Bouchard of the puck in front of the net as Bouchard was about to take a shot. After Higgins skated to the corner to retrieve the puck and clear it, Bouchard approached and was accidentally elbowed by Higgins on his chin.

He was immediately dazed. You could see it on video. The next morning, he woke up and felt "off."

He had headaches and the "pressure" he talked about so much during his 20-month absence (one game in that stretch) from a concussion from March 2009-Dec 2010.

"We’re trying to be positive here," Bouchard said. "There’s symptoms that I had in my previous one that I don’t have right now. I guess it could be a good sign. But I still have headaches, but at the same time, it's not good. So hopefully it will be quicker."

Bouchard said everything used to bother him during his first concussion, like driving and watching TV. He said he's having no problems with that thus far.

"I wish I could give you a timetable, but it’s pretty much day to day and make sure I’m symptom free before I start exercising again," Bouchard said. "I’m positive I can come back. The only bad thing about concussions is you don’t know how much time it’s going to take."

Bouchard said it's a fast game and accidents will happen, but he wishes there was more respect on the ice (talking about Bogosian hit and others). He joins a laundry list of NHLers, including several top ones like Sidney Crosby and Marc Savard and Chris Pronger, sidelined by concussions.

Bouchard said he'll be patient and make sure he's 100 percent before he starts working out. He said he also suffered whiplash, so his neck is stiff.

“I have a special helmet that’s supposed to help against concussions and my mouthguard, that’s supposed to be better and help you if you get hit. So I guess I took all the precautions that I could, but I guess it wasn’t enough.”

Real quick update because I have to get to my flight to Chicago:

--Devin Setoguchi apoligized to his teammates for missing yesterday morning's meeting, felt awful, understands why he had to be held accountable. They told him before the game, but he had a meeting in the morning with coach Mike Yeo and GM Chuck Fletcher: "There's no excuse. We have one job, and that's to come to the rink. I got penalized for that and now I'm going to try to get back here and get ready to go here." 

--Josh Harding didn't practice this morning. Yeo said he was complaining last night of sickness and he still felt that way this morning. Matt Hackett will likely be recalled.

--Colton Gillies left the ice early with a lower-body injury. Setoguchi will replace him.  

 

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