Ramblings: COVID Issues; Montreal Injuries; Early-Season Stats on Bjorkstrand and Robertson – December 16

Michael Clifford

2021-12-16

Well, the COVID issues in the NHL just keep ramping up. There have already been a plethora of issues this year, between shutdowns in Ottawa and New York, and last reports were approaching 20% of the league in protocols this year. Just being a sports writer over the last two years, it's an eerie vibe reminiscent of March 2020, only now we have vaccines and experience. Regardless, as long as the NHL keeps playing, there is news to bring.

First, we add Patrice Bergeron to the COVID list:

That is now two-thirds of the top line, joining Brad Marchand. Craig Smith is also in protocols, and they just played the Calgary Flames, which is very noteworthy. Why? Well…

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There is a lot more Flames news:

The league goes on break a week from tomorrow. It seems assured the Flames aren't returning until after Christmas, if not until 2022. The good news is that so far, it appears all the players and staff with COVID have avoided serious outcomes, with only a couple becoming mildly ill. Milan Lucic did say in an interview recently that the entire team was vaccinated and had begun their booster program, so this is all great news. Best wishes to the players in their recovery.

For fantasy, it is all league-dependent. Use your IRs, but they may be getting full at this point, even with expanded ro