According to GM Jim Rutherford in today’s morning press conference, Patric Hornqvist will be kept out of the beginning of training camp due to a hand injury his suffered late last season. This was evident after the set groups were released this morning, showing an omission of the winger on each of the three teams.
“He had a procedure done in the summer on his hand,” said Rutherford. However, Penguins fans can breathe easy, as the Swedish winger is expected to re-join the team by the end of the camp week.
Hornqvist was pictured earlier in the week with a blue cast on his right hand on the team’s Instagram account.
The injury was suffered during the 2017 playoffs, kept Hornqvist out of some games, and had him demoted to the 4th line for others, including Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final where he was still able to score the game’s only non-empty net goal and provide the game (and Cup!) winning goal for Pittsburgh, despite the bad paw.
This is an interesting turn of events and may open up a lot of opportunity for key prospect forwards Zach Aston-Reese, Daniel Sprong, and Teddy Blueger to get more reps on higher lines and give their coaches even more to think about as the fast-approaching season opener nears.
The first game of training camp will be between Team 1 and Team 2, which features all three aforementioned players. Look for the three of them to try and make even bigger impressions as the game, and camp, moves forward. ,