The news that Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux underwent surgery for a freak, golf-related finger injury surely made many Flyers fans nervous. Having their star player anywhere below 100 percent for the start of the season should make any fan anxious. As he recovers from the injury, Giroux revealed that he will not be attending Team Canada’s Olympic Orientation Camp, which starts on Aug. 25 in Calgary.
Giroux’s recovery could take up to six weeks, a timeframe that puts his return extremely close to the Flyers’ season opener on Oct. 2 against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Giroux was one of 25 forwards selected to attend the orientation camp, headed by Team Canada coach Mike Babcock and executive director Steve Yzerman. Fortunately for the 25-year-old center, Team Canada has noted that they will not be replacing him due to his absence, although his exclusion from the team would make Team United States fans breathe a bit easier.
Although the camp won’t include any on-ice practice, it’s in Giroux’s (and the Flyers’) best interest to skip camp. Unnecessary travel and prolonged meetings won’t help his gameplay or recovery. These preliminary camps traditionally set the pace and expectations for the coaching style Team Canada will implement during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
With any luck, Giroux will be able to participate in a few pre-season games, although this remains up in the air. As long as their captain is present and healthy for the Oct. 2 season opener, Flyers fans and players will be happy.