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12-22-2013, 07:30 AM
eco's bones
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Elmira NY
Country: United States
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Originally Posted by Beacon View Post
Not even close to what happened to Stefan Cherneski, our 1997 first round draft pick who looked phenomenal in training camp and had many thinking he'll turn into a two-way, hard working 25-30 goal scorer.

Cherneski was the last person to get cut in the 1998 preseason and was expected to return some time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. But less than half a dozen games into it, his knee was absolutely crushed. I saw his X-Rays and his knee was shattered into over a dozen little pieces.

Cherneski's X-Rays looked like someone took a glass cup and smashed it on the ground, leaving only unrecognizable little pieces. The second he got injured, you knew it was going to be terrible. There was no doubt he was out for the rest of the season. I loved his game and hoped he'll return the following season, but it took him until the last game of the NEXT season to even attempt a come back. He first said he felt ok, but the following season, it was still lingering and he lost a lot of the speed that made him successful in juniors.

Forced to choose between continuing his unlikely come back or cashing in his player's insurance, Cherneski retired.

McIlrath might have a minor sprain, but he skated off on his own and will be back very soon. I can't imagine that anything was shattered or broken, it just didn't look that way.
Well this is good news on McIlrath--sounds as if he's out it won't be for long.

Thought Cherneski had shattered his kneecap--not his knee. In any case that was a huge blow to the organization as was Dan Blackburn a few years later and then Cherpanov's death. We've have our share of bad luck with top draft choices. Throw in a handful of poor picks and not hard to see how we're always behind the eight ball injecting quality young players into our lineup.

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