It was the first time Laine has skated since suffering a concussion earlier this month. Despite the good news, head coach Paul Maurice re-iterated that “there is no time-frame” for his star rookie’s return. When asked about how the young left winger looked, Maurice said Laine looked fantastic, but jokingly complained that “his shot is off.”
Laine was concussed in a head-on-head collision with Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe back on January 7. McCabe also took some damage in the hit. TSN analyst and former NHLer Shane Hnidy reported that Laine will be monitored daily to “determine progress going forward.”
Laine had been having a tremendous offensive season before being hurt; he had 21 goals and 37 points in 42 games. At the time of the concussion, Laine was tied for third in league goal scoring with Auston Matthews. While Matthews has passed Laine by one goal and one point, Laine’s offensive numbers have been very impressive. Laine and Matthews appear to be two of the frontrunners for the Calder Trophy, provided Laine is able to return soon and continue scoring at the same pace.