MANNHEIM, Germany – Steven Stamkos is starting to feel better as he recovers from a possible concussion.
The star forward rode a stationary bike Friday at the IIHF World Hockey Championship and didn’t feel any adverse affects from the injury he suffered earlier in the week. He was elbowed in the jaw during a loss to Switzerland on Wednesday and hasn’t been back on the ice since.
Canadian GM Mark Messier called Friday a “great day” for Stamkos.
“He exercised and feels great,” said Messier. “I’ve been watching him. He feels energetic, playful and had an exercise with no kind of consequence.”
Stamkos was expected to be a major contributor for Canada after tying Sidney Crosby for the NHL’s goal-scoring lead this season.
He’s unlikely to play in the game against Sweden on Sunday night because Hockey Canada doesn’t want to risk making his injury worse.
“We’re going to err on the side of caution because that’s a responsibility we have to the players,” said Messier. “We’ll see how it goes. I think it’s a day-to-day thing and we’ll keep monitoring him.
“We’ll see how he feels tomorrow after exercising.”
It’s still too early to say whether Stamkos will return to the Canadian lineup before the end of the tournament.
“I think it would be too speculative,” said Messier. “I know one thing—he’s going to work out harder than he did today. That’s one thing we can be assured of.”