Giorgio Estephan Out 3-6 Weeks
(Photo Credit: Steven Mah – SW Booster)
It’s not the news we wanted to hear, but it’s the news we got. The Hurricanes will have to live life without Giorgio Estephan for the next 3 – 6 weeks. The team confirmed today via Twitter that number 9 is dealing with a lower body injury and will be sidelined for at least a month. Looking ahead at the remaining schedule, it’s likely that the injury will keep Giorgio out of roughly 15 games but the timetable leaves him open for returning prior to the playoffs. While it’s clearly bad news, it’s not the absolute worst case scenario either. As we saw with the ankle injury suffered by Calen Addison after training camp, things could be much worse.
The play happened in the 1st period of last night’s 2-1 road loss in Kelowna. Estephan broke into the zone with speed, crashed the net, lost his footing, then collided violently into the boards. He immediately clutched his ankle and was down for sometime before being helped off the ice by Tyler Wong and the Canes training staff. It’s fair to assume he suffered a high ankle sprain or something of the sort, and will likely be on crutches for a while.
Losing Estephan hurts. There’s no other way of putting it. To date, Giorgio has tallied 27 goals and 36 assists through 51 games played. He was just coming off of his hottest stretch of the season a three week period that saw him catch up with Tyler Wong in the team’s goal scoring race.
— LethbridgeHurricanes (@WHLHurricanes) February 3, 2016
All that said, we have to look at the silver lining. Giorgio should be back in action around early March, giving him some time to find his game before the playoff drive begins. The Hurricanes have built themselves a great cushion, and I don’t necessarily think this injury will put the team in tail spin, so it shouldn’t even be something to fall back on.
Lethbridge had nothing but good luck when it came to injuries in the 1st half of the season, and yes, it’s catching up with them now, but every team deals with this.
Now is not the time to pout and moan about the losing a top player. It might be a natural reaction, and it will be mentioned time and time again if the Canes do start to lose more, but it’s not a great excuse. This team has relied on it’s depth all season and will have to do so again.
If anything, the addition of Colton Kroeker looks brilliant right now as injuries have carved into the centres. Gutierrez should be back soon, and Lindgren has returned already.
Step away from the panic button. Everything is going to be fine…
Rest up and get well soon Giorgio.