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Foligno: 'It hurts to come out now'

Senators forward 'very upset' about timing of broken fibula

Monday, 02.1.2010 / 12:33 PM ET / Features
By Rob Brodie  -
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Foligno: \'It hurts to come out now\'
Senators forward Nick Foligno suffered a broken right fibula when he went down to block a shot by the Canadiens' Marc-Arndre Bergeron during Ottawa's 3-2 overtime victory Saturday at Scotiabank Place (Getty Images).
Even two days later, Nick Foligno still couldn't hide the disappointment of it all.

"I hate crutches," the Ottawa Senators forward said as he hobbled toward the assembled media to talk about the broken right fibula (lower leg) that will sideline him for the next six to eight weeks.

Foligno suffered the injury during Saturday's 3-2 overtime victory over the Montreal Canadiens at Scotiabank Place, when he hit the ice to block a point shot by the Habs' Marc-André Bergeron. The shot struck Foligno in an unpadded area on the side of his leg, just above the top of his skate boot.

"I was pretty upset after the game. It was not what I wanted," Foligno said in a sombre tone earlier today. "I want to be with my teammates, especially in this push going into the playoffs.

"It was one of those freak accidents. You block so many shots and you don't think it's going to hit you there. It hits you in worse places and it doesn't break. It's just unfortunate."

That the 22-year-old Foligno happened to be playing some of the best hockey of his young career just added to the pain.

"I thought I was helping the team," said Foligno, who is wearing a soft cast to protect the broken leg bone. "But it was not even so much the way I was playing. I was just having fun (being a part of) the way we were playing. I was enjoying being out there with the team and we were doing so well.

"It just hurts to come out right now. It’s hard to watch. I was having a lot of fun with the guys and we were having a lot of fun as a team. It’s going to be tough to watch, but I know they’re going to do a great job and give me a chance to come back and help out again."

His teammates have surely noticed Foligno's elevated level of play of late.

"He was really on his game and we're going to miss him," said centre Mike Fisher. "Hopefully, it won't be too long, but it's unfortunate. I feel bad for him."

Senators head coach Cory Clouston also liked what he'd been getting from Foligno, saying "he was doing a good job with the puck down low and cycling the puck very well. But what it does is give opportunities for other guys.

"I was pretty upset after the game. It was not what I wanted. It was one of those freak accidents. You block so many shots and you don't think it's going to hit you there. It hits you in worse places and it doesn't break. It's just unfortunate." - Nick Foligno
"It’s a tough loss and he’s been playing well for us, but we’ve gone through injuries before. This is nothing new for us. We’ll just have to adjust a few lines and move forward."

Fortunately for the Senators, one of those other guys -- forward Jesse Winchester -- has fully recovered from a kneecap injury and should be available to the team for its crucial Northeast Division showdown with the Sabres on Wednesday night in Buffalo (7 p.m., Rogers Sportsnet, Team 1200). In practice this morning at the Bell Sensplex, Clouston moved Danish rookie Peter Regin up to Foligno's spot alongside Fisher and Alex Kovalev.

Foligno, meanwhile, is thankful that the impending two-week Olympic break will give him a chance to shorten his absence from the lineup.

"That is the good thing," he said. "I have the Olympic break to look forward to in the sense that I can give myself some time to heal while everyone's off and, hopefully, it's not too long after that. I'm going to do whatever I can, whatever the trainers say, and try to get back sooner rather than later."

Around the boards

Senators goaltender Brian Elliott has been named the National Hockey League's second star for the period ending Sunday. Elliott, who earned first-star honours the previous week, picked up his latest honour after posting a 3-0-0 record and allowing just three goals ... Netminder Mike Brodeur has been re-assigned to the Binghamton Senators of the American Hockey League, clearing the way for Pascal Leclaire (concussion) to return to active duty ... Defenceman Anton Volchenkov sat out practice today but Clouston said he's expected to be on the ice Tuesday ... Ottawa begins a stretch of three straight games against Canadian rivals on Thursday, when the Vancouver Canucks visit Scotiabank Place (7:30 p.m., Rogers Sportsnet, Team 1200).