Jon Merrill of the New Jersey Devils has had a long, winding road to the NHL. He was injured during his first game in the NHL in a scary incident on November 3 against the Minnesota Wild, and while the play looked pretty bad it is being reported that that young defenseman does not have a concussion. While it took a few days for Merrill to be cleared, Rich Chere of the New Jersey Star-Ledger is reporting that all of the concussion testing came back negative. Chere quoted general manager Lou Lamoriello in his report, who had this to say about Merrill’s health:
Every test came back normal, so he’ll just be a few days because of the lacerations and because of the bang. So it’s a matter of four or five days.
That’s obviously great news considering how awful the outcome of the play could have been. While it was clearly incidental, Merrill was tripped up as he went into the corner and slid face-first into the boards. His visor opened a gash on his face and he was taken from the ice immediately. It might be a week or so, but it appears that Merrill will be able to bounce back quickly following the incident. As injuries continue to pile up for the Devils, every healthy player will be an important. It’s just great news that such a young and promising player didn’t sustain a concussion in his first professional game.