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Marco Sturm calls late-November return to Bruins ‘tough’ 10.26.10 at 11:18 am ET
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WILMINGTON — A smiling Marco Sturm chatted with reporters following his return to the ice on Tuesday, noting that he’s not taking any chances with his recovery and that he isn’t planning on returning to the lineup until he is at 100 percent health.

Sturm, who is recovering from a torn ACL and MCL suffered in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals last year, skated very lightly for about half an hour prior to Bruins’ practice, taking laps and shooting on an empty net. He said that his sessions on the ice will be without teammates for at least the next two weeks as he gets a better feel.

“The knee’s going to let me know how things are going,” Sturm said. “Right now it’s just getting used to the ice again and getting stronger. I still know that I’m not that strong yet, so there’s still time to go, but I was really happy to be back on the ice today.”

The Bruins had initially anticipated a late-November return date for Sturm, but he noted that due to a couple of setbacks — fluid in his knee and the team’s European excursion — coming back at that point would be “tough.”

“I think all the traveling to Europe, I think all that didn’t really help.,” Sturm said. “But the whole team went, and I wanted to go too. It was good, but all the traveling, it didn’t help too much and that’s why I think [the rehab] has gone back a couple of weeks.”

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Marco Sturm, Marc Savard skate prior to Bruins practice (with video) at 10:17 am ET
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WILMINGTON — Marco Sturm could be spotted doing some light skating and shooting around Ristuccia Arena as he works to return from a torn ACL and MCL suffered during last years’ playoff series. As teammates joined him on the ice, so too did Marc Savard.

Sturm, who led the Bruins in scoring last year, wasn’t getting in the hardest of workouts, doing more of this-and-that than anything substantial, but his return to the ice is undoubtedly a good sign for the Bruins as they look to overcome the injuries of Sturm, Savard, and Johnny Boychuk.

David Krejci was also on the ice as the first handful of players skated out. Krejci missed practice on Monday after getting his wisdom teeth removed. The rest of the team is set to take the ice at 11:00 am. After Sturm left the ice, the small group of Bruins consisted of Krejci, Savard, Brian McGrattan, Adam McQuaid, and Daniel Paille taking shots on Tim Thomas and Tuukka Rask.

Here’s video of Sturm skating:

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X-Factors: Marco Sturm 08.27.10 at 4:17 am ET
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Each day this week, WEEI.com will be putting a player or position in the spotlight based on their ‘€œX-factor’€ status entering the season. So far, we’€™ve taken a look at Michael Ryder, Blake Wheeler, Nathan Horton, and the goaltending position. Rounding out the group is Marco Sturm, who may be the biggest case of them all given the uncertainty that surrounds both his eventual return from injury and what type of impact he can have.

Things have been a bit strange when it comes to Marco Sturm this offseason. He’s been celebrated by fans, but not for anything he’ll do on the ice. Instead, Bruins die-hards cheer up during salary cap discussions when they realize that the winger will save the team $3.5 million in cap space to begin the season thanks to his long-term injury status.

Sturm has now had season-ending major knee injuries in each of the past two seasons. In 2008, he tore the ACL in his left knee and was shut down after just 19 games. Last season, of course, he tore both the ACL and MCL in his right knee in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Flyers. Injuries have become a big part of the discussion with Sturm, but if the Bruins can get him back(and that’s a big “if”) they could have themselves an offensive sleeper for the 2010-11 season.

The team doesn’t expect to have Sturm ready to go until late November, but with such an injury, nothing can be counted on no matter how “successful” the surgery could have went. The thing is, with the big additions to the offense in Nathan Horton and Tyler Seguin, the Bruins will have a chance in the time Sturm’s away to see how this new offense will gel. Plus, they’ll be able to go over the cap by however much he earns. This is awfully convenient for the Bruins, who just happen to be over $3 million over the cap before subtracting Sturm’s $3.5 million. Read the rest of this entry »

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Sturm undergoes successful knee surgery 05.18.10 at 2:57 pm ET
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Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli issued a press release Tuesday afternoon announcing that forward Marco Sturm underwent successful surgery to repair his right knee. The surgery entailed ACL reconstruction, MCL repair and partial lateral meniscectomy and was performed by Dr. Peter Asnis at Massachusetts General Hospital. Sturm injured the knee in the first period of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals when he pushed off to make a check on Flyers defenseman Matt Carle and torqued his knee on the ice at TD Garden. Sturm is expected to rehab for six months.

Here is the press release from the Bruins media relations staff:

Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli announced today that forward Marco Sturm underwent successful surgery on his right knee. The surgery ‘€” which entailed a right knee ACL reconstruction, MCL repair, and partial lateral meniscectomy ‘€” was performed by Dr. Peter Asnis at Mass General Hospital.

Sturm sustained a torn ACL and a torn MCL in his right knee during the first period of the Bruins-Flyers game on Saturday, May 1 (Game 1).

His expected recovery time is an estimated six months post-surgery.

Sturm is a veteran of 855 NHL regular-season games and has registered 234 goals and 232 assists for 466 points in his career. The 31-year-old tallied 22 goals and 15 assists during the 2009-10 season, marking the seventh time in his career he surpassed the 20-goal plateau. He played in seven playoff games this season and has scored eight goals and tallied 11 assists in 52 postseason games for San Jose and Boston.

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Thornton prefers playing: ‘Watching hockey sucks’ 05.03.10 at 1:24 pm ET
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Shawn Thornton is not the type to sit and watch his team mates go up and down the ice in an intense playoff game. Yet, in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Flyers, Thornton found himself a healthy scratch watching from media Level 9 of TD Garden, his heart trying to escape his chest every scoring chance the Bruins had on Philadelphia goaltender Brian Boucher.

“I want to be in every series. It is the best time of year, what you work for all summer and all winter long to get to this point. Watching hockey sucks. I would rather be playing,” Thornton said after the morning skate on Monday before Game 2. “I watched the second and third. The first I was working out. I can’t stand it. I almost had a heart attack. It is way harder to watch than it is to play. When you are involved you are in the flow but when you are up top or in the back room watching the game, every chance your heart jumps out of your chest, so it is tough but it is exciting as well. As I said before, I would rather be playing and that is one of the reasons because it sucks to have to sit there.”

Thornton will likely be in the lineup for Game 2, but not under the circumstances that anybody would find ideal. With Marco Sturm going down for the rest of the season (and the beginning of next) with two torn ligaments in his right knee, Thornton will resume his spot on the checking line and get down to business against the bruising Flyers attack. Thornton is a good Bruins citizen. He is always accountable, always present and always wants to play. There are more talented skaters among the Bruins forwards but he brings a lot of heart to the dressing room and the rink. He cannot see himself in the lineup as any type of reward because another one of the standout clubhouse guys has to face surgery and months of rehabilitation.

“I wouldn’t use the word rewarded. A good friend, good team mate is down. It is tough. I don’t like how it happened with the injury but I am going to get in the lineup and try to play as well as I can,” Thornton said.

A lot of people scratched their heads when Thornton was the man to sit as opposed to a player like Blake Wheeler, who has been ineffective around the goal and prone to turnovers through the end of the season and the playoffs. The thought was that, since the Flyers are so physical and aggressive, that Boston would need a player of Thornton’s talents to help counterbalance Philadelphia’s style. Former Bruins player and coach and current NESN and NBC hockey analyst Mike Milbury said on the Dale and Holley show recently that sitting Thornton would be a crime.

‘€œI would shed a real tear if I were a Bruins fan, if that happens,’€ Milbury said. ‘€œI don’€™t think his presence in the lineup is given enough importance by the people in management, frankly. I’€™ve seen him sort of get jerked around this year and I thought it was a mistake. If he doesn’€™t play tomorrow I think it is a mistake, and if he doesn’€™t play every game the rest of the way I think it’€™s a crime.’€

Crime averted though it took a catastrophe to happen.

Unlike Milbury, Thornton is not suited to the media level. He joked around with reporters that they had it easy on Level 9 but ultimately, it is just not his style.

“The game is so much easier on the ninth level. That is why you guys [the media] make so much money, huh? I kind of prepare the same way I would for any other game. It is easier up there, you can see things happen before they happen. It is a lot quicker on ice level so I just come out and do what I do,” Thornton said.

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Somber Sturm has long road ahead at 12:35 pm ET
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Marco Sturm has been down this road before and he does not like it. On Dec. 18, 2008 Sturm tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and missed the rest of the Bruins regular season as well as the playoffs. On Saturday, he tore the medial collateral [MCL] and anterior cruciate ligaments [ACL] when he went in for a hit against Philadelphia Matt Carle 21-second into his first shift in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against Philadelphia.

“Yeah, I tried to hit him [Carle] and I felt it right away when I went to hit him. I got caught or something and my knee twisted just a little bit and I could hear right away the big pop and I had heard it again, before [his previous ACL tear] and I knew it was going to be the same thing from before,” Sturm said.

For Carle’s part, he did not register that the Bruins forward had been injured until play was stopped when Tuukka Rask covered the puck in the Boston zone. It was just a normal hockey play — Sturm going for a defenseman on the forecheck, the defenseman gets the puck away and braces for the hit.

“I just saw him coming out of the corner of my eye and had to get rid of the puck because I knew I was going to get hit,” Carle said. “So, I just flipped the puck and braced for the hit and saw him go down right after. Just kind of one of those weird plays that happens during a game. As soon as I flipped the puck and reacting to that and he just kind of bounced off me and I didn’t know he was hurt until later in the shift and he was just laying on the ice and you know it had to be something pretty serious because he wasn’t moving.”

Sturm noted that the injury is the exactly same that Patriots quarterback Tom Brady suffered in the beginning of the 2008 NFL season. In as such, Sturm will wait for the MCL to reduce in swelling and heal itself a little before going in and having surgery on the knee. Like his left knee the year before, Dr. Peter Asnis and Dr. Tom Gill will perform the procedure in about four to six weeks. In terms of rehabilitation, Sturm does not yet know if he will stay in Boston or head back to Germany.

“I am definitely going to have Dr. Asnis and Dr. Gill do the surgery again but for sure I am going to have it here. I don’t know if I am going to stay here or go back home. There are a lot of questions and I just don’t know and we will have to wait and see,” Sturm said. “These guys, they didn’€™t do it, but it’€™s acting like Tom Brady. Same thing. But he decided to go to another doctor. And he did it too early, because the MCL wasn’€™t healed. So you got to get it healed first and then do the surgery. So it could be a while.”

At this point though, Sturm is just trying to cope with what could be the lowest moment of his career and perhaps the very end of his career. He is only 31 years old and has 855 NHL games under his belt but is now looking at his second major knee surgery in as many years.

“It is going to be the toughest challenge. The last one I didn’t know what to expect, I just went at it but I was around all the season with the boys,” Sturm said. “That helped me a lot. This time I know how hard it was and all that. It is a lot of work. I don’t know. Right now, I don’t know. I am still rattled and just got to be patient. I know I have my family to support me, my family at home so, we’ll see. It will be hard, definitely but I know what to expect now and just try do the best with it.”

It will be December before Sturm can even think about coming back to the ice for the Bruins for the 2010-11 season, his last of year under contract to the Bruins for $3.5 million. Yet, Sturm is the type of high-character guy who has worked hard to get back from injuries before and, though melancholy sitting on the stage at TD Garden Monday morning, showed a bit of resolve to think that he can make it back from a catastrophic injury, one more time.

“After the ACL from last year and just never thought it was going to be another injury like this. It is going to be a tough one but I have always come back from big injuries and I will come back from this one but it is going to be tough,” Sturm said.

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Sturm out for season with knee injury 05.02.10 at 12:44 pm ET
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Bruins coach Claude Julien confirmed reports Sunday afternoon that forward Marco Sturm will be out for the rest of the season with a knee injury. Sturm suffered the injury 21 seconds into his first shift of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Flyers after he hit the boards when he missed a partial check on Philadelphia defenseman Matt Carle. Sturm crumpled to the ice and had to be assisted to the tunnel.

“Marco suffer a knee injury yesterday that will keep him out for the rest of the year,” Julien said. “It is unfortunate news for our hockey club and especially for him who has battled through a major injury last year and was really looking forward to these playoffs.”

The injury is believed to be Sturm’s right knee, which is the opposite from when he injured his left knee on Dec. 18, 2008, and missed most of the 2009-10 season. Sturm had been held pointless for the Bruins’ seven playoff games, though led the team with 22 goals during the regular season. Sturm did not produce for the Bruins down the stretch, either, as he only had two points (a goal and an assist) since March 13 after back-to-back multiple-point games on March 9 and 11, the two games after center Marc Savard went down with a Grade 2 concussion in Pittsburgh on March 7.

Julien said that he was unsure what the next medical step would be for Sturm and that the doctors need to let the swelling go down before figuring the extent of the injury.

“I don’t know yet,” Julien said. “We talked about the injury keeping him out for the rest of the year. When you have the injury there is swelling involved and that is a medical issue and I don’t know what is going to happen either way with him.”

UPDATE — The Bruins announced on Sunday afternoon that Sturm has torn both his ACL and MCL and will have surgery in 4-6 weeks. Here is the full press release from the team:

BOSTON — Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli announced today that forward Marco Sturm will miss the remainder of the 2009-10 season after sustaining a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and torn medial collateral ligament (MCL) in his right knee. He sustained the injury during the first period of the Bruins/Flyers game on Saturday, May 1.

Sturm will have surgery within 4-6 weeks from the date of the injury (May 1). His expected recovery time is an estimated six months post-surgery.

Sturm is a veteran of 855 NHL regular season games and has registered 234 goals and 232 assists for 466 points in his career. The 31-year-old tallied 22 goals and 15 assists during the 2009-10 season, marking the seventh time in his career he surpassed the 20-goal plateau. He played in all seven playoff games this season and has scored eight goals and tallied 11 assists in 52 postseason games for San Jose and Boston.

An injury to his left knee caused him to miss significant time during the 2008-09 season.

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