Canucks Beneath the Microscope: Ilya Mikheyev's resolve to delay knee surgical procedure despatched message

‘He (Ilya Mikheyev) will finally do straight-line skating earlier than common drills with tight turns. Hockey is exclusive in that skating shouldn’t be an ACL-dependent activity and a few forgo surgical procedure and may preserve enjoying.’ — Dr. Harjas Grewel

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We’re wanting again on the 2022-23 Vancouver Canucks with a spotlight immediately on Ilya Mikheyev. Within the coming weeks, we’re breaking down the season and looking at how participant conditions venture going into 2023-24.

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Ilya Mikheyev

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Age: 28.
Place: Left wing. Proper wing.
Profession stats: GP: 192. G: 49. A: 51. Pts: 100.
Contract standing: Signed four-year, US$19 million, free agent contract with Canucks on July 13, 2022, that carries an annual US$4.75 million wage cap hit.
Expiry standing: Unrestricted free agent.

Ilya Mikheyev didn’t say quite a bit, but it surely meant all the things.

When the Vancouver Canucks’ winger spoke on the finish of the season of being wholesome for coaching camp, following Feb. 2 surgical procedure to restore a partial anterior cruciate ligament tear suffered Sept. 25 within the pre-season, his retort was brief and to the purpose.

“I really feel good and I’m in timeline now,” he stated. “I’ve appointment with surgeon subsequent month (Could) and we’ll make choice after I begin skating in summer season — hopefully late June or early July.”

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That may enable the smooth-skating Russian to proceed the beneficial impression he made as a free-agent acquisition in July.

Huge, quick and powerful with a penalty kill presence and underrated offensive capacity, he checked bins. An arduous warm-up process earlier than each recreation when he returned Oct. 18, and in addition taped-up and sporting a brace, spoke to his resolve.

Vancouver Canucks winger Ilya Mikheyev is congratulated after scoring against the Avalanche on Nov. 23 in Denver.
Vancouver Canucks winger Ilya Mikheyev is congratulated after scoring in opposition to the Avalanche on Nov. 23 in Denver. Photograph by Jack Dempsey /AP

He may have packed it in earlier than amassing 28 factors (13-15) in 46 video games to have the process. And in a tearful handle together with his voice cracking when lastly shut down — the 6-foot-2, 192 pound winger scored Jan. 27 in his closing recreation — a sequence of crafted posts on his Twitter account clarified his situation and rationale.

“If I continued to play, I wouldn’t be prepared for coaching camp,” stated the put up. “I recognize everybody’s concern, however I’ve no complaints the way in which this was dealt with. I perceive there may be plenty of debate about my choice to play with an ACL damage. I went via a number of exams and will play with out inflicting extra injury. That’s what I wished to do.”

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Harjas Grewal is a B.C. doctor and ardent hockey analyst. He studied bodily medication, accomplished a rehabilitation residency and was medical assistant on the 2019 world junior hockey championship in Vancouver and Victoria.

He expects if Mikheyev can begin skating 5 months following surgical procedure, it’s very sensible he’ll be prepared for camp.

“He’ll finally do straight-line skating earlier than common drills with tight turns,” Dr. Grewal advised Postmedia Information on Thursday. “Hockey is exclusive in that skating shouldn’t be an ACL-dependent activity and a few forgo surgical procedure and may preserve enjoying. 

“Soccer, basketball and soccer gamers common nine-to-12 months (ACL surgical procedure restoration) as a result of these sports activities require working and slicing rapidly, which places extra stress via the ACL than any skating manoeuvre.”

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How 2022-23 went: Harm, scoring, surgical procedure

Mikheyev had his efficiency moments this season.

He had 4 factors (1-3) and a plus-five ranking in a 6-2 drubbing of the San Jose Sharks on Dec. 27. Three objectives in a span of 4 video games pushed his purpose whole to 12 via 30 video games and put him on tempo for 31 objectives earlier than being shut down. His profession excessive is 21 objectives in 53 video games with Toronto within the 2021-22 season.

Of his 32 factors that marketing campaign, 5 objectives had been on the facility play and 4 had been short-handed. He additionally appeared in all seven of Toronto’s first-round playoff video games and had two objectives and two assists. He additionally noticed a restricted position and sought a commerce.

Whether or not enjoying with Elias Pettersson and Andrei Kuzmenko, or Bo Horvat and Brock Boeser, he tailored rapidly. His pursuit and tempo opened lanes and he completed possibilities with a 14.3 per cent capturing share and 0.61 factors per recreation, which ranked sixth on the membership. He was additionally accountable with only one minor penalty in 16:55 of common ice time.

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How the long run seems to be: Well being may imply wealth

Mikheyev must be the least of the Canucks’ issues. They don’t have any wage cap house, a glut of wingers, and the one option to achieve monetary flexibility is shifting a winger and never retaining wage or parting with a choose.

As for Mikheyev, he can play both wing and getting again to the velocity he dropped at Vancouver shall be a giant bonus. He may simply be a second-line match, work once more with countryman Kuzmenko, or be a part of a new-look trio. He can kill penalties, play the second power-play unit as a net-front presence and be a low-maintenance, excessive vitality pressure for coach Rick Tocchet.

He took over the bench per week earlier than Mikheyev’s season got here to an in depth. However a video assessment will reveal all the things he’s on the lookout for in wingers to play with a presence, get to the within and be laborious to play in opposition to. It may give Mikheyev a leg-up within the top-six combine.

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Biggest strengths: Versatility, velocity, penalty-kill presence and offensive potential.

Biggest weak point: Can put himself in awkward board positions on forecheck to ask damage.

Is he commerce bait?: No. He’s a palatable wage cap hit if productive.

The massive query: Can he keep wholesome and rating at the very least 25 objectives?

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Originally posted 2023-05-11 21:19:22.