Clarkson was placed on injured reserve on January 17 due to a bursa sac issue in his elbow. Clarkson is reported to be close to returning, as he waits to get staples removed from his elbow. We could be seeing Clarkson in the lineup sometime this week. Troy Bodie was called up from the Marlies in order to fill the gap that Clarkson’s injury has left. Bodie has played well in this spot, bringing a strong physical presence to the third line.
Peter Holland’s injury, which was a bit of a surprise, kept him out of the lineup in Saturday’s game against the Ottawa Senators. His absence was due to severe ‘lace bite’, which is described as tendon inflammation on the top of the foot from tight laces or skates that aren’t fitting properly. James van Riemsdyk said that Holland’s lace bite is “the worst he’s ever seen” and Randy Caryle called it “crazy”, but it has yet be said when Holland will possibly be returning. Greg McKegg made his NHL debut against the Sens on Saturday night, replacing Holland by playing centre on the third line between Mason Raymond and Troy Bodie.
Carter Ashton also missed Saturday’s game against the Senators due to an injured hand. Ashton was spotted with his hand heavily bandaged before the game. Carlyle said that Ashton was a “question mark” to play against the Sens, so the injury likely isn’t too severe. Frazer McLaren suited up in Saturday’s game for the fourth line where Ashton often plays.
Bolland, since suffering a severed tendon on November 2 against the Vancouver Canucks, is continuing to progress and get more comfortable on the ice. Carlyle said that there is a 50/50 chance that we will see Bolland in the lineup before the Olympic break, although it seems more likely that Bolland will be given those two weeks to continue to prepare for game action. Bolland commented that he is feeling much more comfortable, and no longer thinks that he’ll miss the rest of the season. It will be interesting to see when Bolland will feel strong enough to return.
Trevor Smith, since recovering from his hand injury that had kept him out of the lineup since mid-December, has suffered an undisclosed injury in the weight room during a post-practise workout. There has been no talk about when Smith could return to the lineup.