At the Columbus Blue Jackets’ morning skate on Saturday, James Wisniewski was able to do something he hadn’t done in a week: fully skate with his teammates.
It’s been a week since Wisniewski lost control and propelled backwards into the corner boards during the Blue Jackets’ game with the Detroit Red Wings. Luckily, he was able to leave the ice on his own, but he suffered a concussion, injured left hip flexor, bruised lower right back, swollen elbow and neck sprain. To say he was bruised and sore all over is an understatement.
On Friday, Wisniewski skated with the team at an optional skate, but he was wearing a red “no contact” jersey. By Saturday, the red jersey was gone.
Wisniewski told reporters on that his goal was to return to action for Sunday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers. He doesn’t remember the crash itself, only that he left the ice and couldn’t remember where his stall was in the dressing room. Even after watching replays of the crash, he’s not certain how he came to fall.
He did, however, notice that not only did the crowd cheer him on as he left the ice, but both teams gave him a stick tap to show their support. Wisniewski called it “total class” and said “No matter what kind of battle you’re having out on the ice, you never want to see something like that happen to a guy.”
While he’s aiming for his return on Sunday, something else may keep him from doing that: his wife was due to have their first child this past week, so their daughter could make an appearance at any time. Don’t be surprised if he does start the game against the Oilers but suddenly disappears.