Jonathan Quick was a Grade 2 groin strain, according to Los Angeles Kings coach Darryl Sutter (via Lisa Dillman), as an MRI revealed this week.
The goaltender has started rehabbing the injury. There’s no timetable for his return.
So what’s a Grade 2 strain mean? It’s a partial or moderate tear of the muscles in the groin. Most of the references we’ve found for the injury mark the recovery time at 4-to-6 weeks, but there’s been no prognosis yet for Quick.
What does this mean for the Los Angeles Kings? It’s Ben Scrivens time!
"We're obviously confident in him. We haven't seen him play that much. his start on the road this year was a shutout in Florida. He's been in three times and played really well for us off the bench, so we're looking forward to seeing him,” said Sutter on Thursday.
Is there a marked difference between the two as puck-handlers?
"There's an elite four or five guys in the league that play it as good as defensemen, everybody else plays it just about the same. I think that Jonathan and Ben would play it just about the same. The difference always is communication,” said Sutter.
That said, he’s no Jonathan Bernier, who rescued the Kings last season when Quick struggled.
The Kings are fifth in the Pacific and ninth in the West with 23 points. Obviously, losing Quick for a long duration could impact that; and in the Western Conference, you might not be able to afford a bad month.
Now, what does this mean for Quick’s place on the U.S. Olympic team?
Quick was a de facto leader for the starting job with Team USA for Sochi entering the season. His numbers haven’t been stellar, but one expects he’ll still be one of the three goalies the Americans carry if he’s healthy.
(But let’s acknowledge, for a moment, the irony in Quick being injured in a game this week against the Buffalo Sabres, in front of the chief competition for that job, Ryan Miller, whose played outstanding so far.)
Miller, Jimmy Howard, Ben Bishop, Craig Anderson and Cory Schneider are all in the conversation for Sochi. How much time Quick loses to this injury, knowing the U.S. is going to go with the hot hand, complicates that decision-making process.
Additional reporting by Sean Leahy.