The Ottawa Senators caught a bad break ahead of training camp when young pivot Curtis Lazar came down with mononucleosis, and the breaks aren’t getting any better.
Senators coach Guy Boucher announced Saturday that Mark Stone has been diagnosed with a concussion, and the 24-year-old winger will be on the shelf day-to-day. Boucher said Stone’s health and his recovery progress will be evaluated daily, but, currently, there’s no timetable for his return. There’s also no word on how exactly the injury occurred, either.
Concern for Stone first arose during the opening day of Senators’ training camp Friday. He was part of the skate early on, but left the ice before the skate was over and did not return. Because of the injury, Stone didn’t take part in Saturday’s practice, and there’s no certainty when he’ll be able to rejoin the Senators.
The only good news in all of this — if you can even call it that — is that the Senators still have nearly three weeks to go before the start of the regular season, and there’s no need to rush Stone back into action. Thankfully, Stone doesn’t have a history of head injuries, either.
Outside of Erik Karlsson, Stone has arguably become the center of Ottawa’s attack in just two short seasons. This past campaign, Stone notched 23 goals and 61 points as a sophomore, finishing behind only Karlsson in scoring for the Senators. It was the second consecutive season Stone surpassed the 20-goal, 60-point plateau, and he appears primed to take another step forward this coming season.
Stone took over a top line role in 2015-16, averaging upwards of 20 minutes per night, and he was one of the top 50 scorers in the entire league at 5-on-5. Stone’s 12 goals and 34 points ranked 48th in 5-on-5 scoring, and his 22 assists ranked 39th among at 5-on-5.
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