Bourdon skates, but nowhere near ready to return

Bourdon skates, but nowhere near ready to return
September 15, 2013, 12:30 pm
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In 45 career NHL games, Marc-Andre Bourdon has four goals and three assists. (USA Today Images)

Defenseman Marc-Andre Bourdon went on the ice Sunday at Wells Fargo Center with teammates for the first time in training camp.
 
It was just skating drills without contact, but a small step forward.
 
That said, Bourdon acknowledged he is nowhere near ready to return because of continued post-concussion syndrome and will accept being placed on LTIR this fall, if necessary.
 
Bourdon has had multiple concussions the last two seasons here and in the AHL. His progress is monitored daily by trainer Jim McCrossin.
 
“I have still had symptoms and I was never [medically] cleared,” Bourdon said. “Me and Jimmy talked and just decided to keep me off the ice.
 
“Every time I skated with the guys [in August] and there was contact and stuff, it was just bad luck and I had symptoms. I can’t have the contact if I am still having symptoms.”
 
He said he felt “okay” on the ice today but wouldn’t know for hours whether there was any delayed reaction. Bourdon did all his drills with Kimmo Timonen.
 
His symptoms are classic post-concussion: headache, dizziness, balance issues, all tied to his vestibular system, much like what Chris Pronger is still going through.
 
Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren has only said that Bourdon, who turns 24 this week, is day-to-day.
 
Yet on Friday, Flyers chairman Ed Snider said Bourdon would go on LTIR in October when Pronger is also placed there. Bourdon says he won’t fight that designation.
 
“If it is necessary for the team, it is necessary,” Bourdon said. “I can’t control when I am going to come back. Whatever Paul Holmgren decides to do.
 
“What  is the difference whether I am on it [LTIR] or not if I am not playing? It’s gonna make salary cap room for the team to use it.”
 
Bourdon has been seeing neurology specialists at the Navy Yard for vestibular therapy. He feels it’s helped him. Those specialists found he had other problems aside from his concussion that are inter-related.
 
“I broke my lower back when I was younger,” Bourdon said. “All the vertebra are related in the back. My [cervical] vertebra are not moving very well around my neck and head. I get all kinds of headaches from that, too. We’re working on that.”
 
Bourdon said in retrospect, he should have been on the ice sooner in his rehab.
 
“I guess I waited too long with taking time off and the result of that is I have a lot of stuff going on right now,” he said. “It’s better and going in the right direction.
 
“Some weeks I have better weeks. But I have ups and downs. That’s how concussions are. There is no way to know how it will be in the future.”
 
For now, he wants to maintain a positive approach to full recovery and not worry about whether he plays this season.
 
“I worked hard all summer on my vestibular system,” Bourdon said. “I didn’t do it for nothing. I know at some point there will be an end to it. Nobody has a crystal ball when that will be.”
 
Split squads
The only Flyers at practice Sunday were those remaining behind to play Monday night against Washington here. Those going to Ontario for the two games Sunday and Monday night were to fly early this afternoon. Craig Berube will coach the club left behind.
 
Travel roster
The Flyers will bring 14 regulars who played in the league last season on the road trip. Among them, Hal Gill, Steve Mason, Brayden and Luke Schenn, Adam Hall, Scott Hartnell, Max Talbot, Nick Grossmann and Erik Gustafsson.
 
Here’s the full travel roster for the two games against the Maple Leafs:

Forwards
10 Schenn, Brayden
15 McGinn, Tye
18 Hall, Adam
19 Hartnell, Scott
21 Laughton, Scott
23 Holmstrom, Ben
24 Read, Matt
25 Talbot, Max
36 Rinaldo, Zac
37 Rosehill, Jay
47 Noebels, Marcel
52 Cousins, Nick
56 Brown, Tyler
64 Alderson, Brandon
65 Bordson, Rob
74 Clarkson, Doug

Defense
08 Grossmann, Nicklas
22 Schenn, Luke
26 Gustafsson, Erik
27 Gervais, Bruno
38 Lauridsen, Oliver
39 Alt, Mark
41 Meszaros, Andrej
75 Gill, Hal

Goalies
33 Heeter, Cal
35 Mason, Steve
49 Stolarz, Anthony

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