Steve Sullivan of the Nashville Predators has played two games since his return from almost 2 years away from the sport he loves so much. And he has just scored a goal in his second match, against the Toronto Maple Leafs, after his return from a back injury. There were a lot of days when he could not even move, when he was unable to pick up his kids and swing them around, or kick a soccer ball, or do much of anything other than just sit there in his back brace, waiting.
Sullivan, who recorded an assist in his return match, is just the third player since the Second World War to miss more than 600 days with an injury and return to the ice with the same team. Jim Peplinski, the old Calgary Flames tough guy, and Mario Lemieux, with Pittsburgh, are the others. Sullivan went through two surgeries and extensive rehab before coach Barry Trotz, who doubted Sullivan would play again, agreed to put him back on the ice. Let’s hope it works out for Timmins, Ontario’s second most famous native (after Shania Twain)!