BOLTON, Mass. — Last year around this time, Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli announced the shocking news that center Marc Savard wouldn’t be able to begin training camp with the team because of post-concussion syndrome symptoms.
Savard had returned to the lineup in the second round of the playoffs, but kept the symptoms he was feeling during offseason workouts mostly private.
When the Bruins lifted the Stanley Cup in June, Nathan Horton wasn’t playing because of the concussion he suffered in Game 3 of the Cup Final against Vancouver. In the aftermath of that series, he said he was feeling better. When he got back in town last week he said he hadn’t felt symptoms for a significant amount of time.
Now that he’s started skating, Horton says he’s still in tip-top shape and will be ready to go when the Bruins hit the ice Saturday for their first official practices at TD Garden. Horton’s also confident there won’t be any surprise announcements and that he’ll pass his physical and conditioning tests on Friday.
“Definitely. I’m already cleared to practice and stuff. I’ll be fine,” he said before teeing off at the Bruins’ charity golf tournament at The International.
As we all know, Horton had never experienced the Stanley Cup playoffs prior to last season. He passed the most extreme test an NHL player could face by helping the Bruins get to the Final with three game-winning goals, all the while playing with a separated shoulder. In fact, the shoulder might’ve postponed his offseason regimen more than the concussion.
“For a little bit there, for sure, I could’ve started a little bit earlier but I took some more time off,” he said. “I guess that’s what happens during the playoffs. You play so long and the year’s so long, everyone battled through a lot of injuries. I guess that’s what it’s all about. You want to do that, and you want to be able to battle through. And in the end that’s all that mattered. We won the Stanley Cup because of people battling through injuries.”