A text to Garth Snow tonight was returned with a note that the Islanders are unable to provide an official update on the status of Chris Campoli’s injury, suffered in Tuesday’s ex game. You’d have to think the Islanders would have a full report on Campoli from their doctors on Friday. Jeff Tambellini (“below the neck,” according to Scott Gordon) and Sean Bergenheim are also injured.
Greg Logan has a story on his blog with some important detail on how NHL teams are reporting injuries this season – which is not reporting them at all. I spoke about this on XM NHL Home Ice today (link to interview in entry below) and will follow this story over the next few weeks after digging around some more.
What’s known is the general managers of the NHL – not the Board of Governors, not the Players Association, not the league office, not PR – pushed hard to essentially have no injury policy. This is an inane decision that no doubt will have major ramifications. And it’s unlikely to be pretty. Simply put, I don’t think the Boys Club thought this baby through. Prediction: they’ll be forced to re-group on it by Christmas.
Another one: commentators will wonder why the National Football League does full disclosure on injuries, but the NHL can’t.
Just wait til a major market writer decides to use a reliable source to make his own season-ending injury announcement about a star player. Oh, I pray the confrontation is in a locker room hallway where I’m standing.
Logan points out in his blog how a player can have a serious injury and be shamed as the team refuses to disclose why he’s not playing. Fans see these players on the arena concourse, looking sharp in their GQ suits, and wonder why the heck they’re not out there battling for their team.
For the Islanders and other teams that strive to communicate with their fans with integrity, I would suggest they consider their own team policy regarding the announcement of injuries. Islanders president Chris Dey has made strong strides opening doors to the fans, even going on Islandermania to clarify issues. When it comes to injuries, a balance between protecting your players and informing your fans can certainly be struck.
Above everything else, National Hockey League teams might want to feel an obligation to their ticket-buyers to tell the truth about whether their favorite players are going to be in the lineup.