News and notes from around the NHL this evening:
- The NHL has updated its concussion protocol to add two key elements: (1) central office spotters watching all the games via the League office, and (2) mandatory fines for clubs who do not remove a player who requires a concussion evaluation. The central office staffers will watch the games back at league headquarters in New York and alert teams and in-arena spotters anytime they feel a player requires concussion evaluation. Concussions have become a hot topic is sports—namely the NFL—and the NHL’s on-going concussion litigation may have affected this change.
- Speaking of concussions, Sidney Crosby has no timetable for recovery but is not worried about any longterm effects, reports Will Graves of the AP Sports. Crosby suffered another concussion this preseason and is currently out indefinitely. He took part in an hour-long skate today with other injured players but intends to take it day by day. Crosby is no stranger to concussions—he missed significant time in 2011 and 2012 with a concussion and related injuries stemming from numerous collisions. His history may be of benefit, however, as Crosby understands that concussion recovery takes patience and that he cannot rush progress.
- The Toronto Maple Leafs have released forward Brandon Prust from his PTO, reports Sportsnet’s Chris Johnson. Prust failed to make the team after a disappointing training camp. Despite being released, Prust continued to practice with the team today before the season began in an effort to garner a contract nonetheless. Prust acknowledged that making the Maple Leafs was a long shot, and he hopes that he turned some heads in the process.