Nolan Patrick Still Not Quite Ready to Return

The Vegas Golden Knights are back and are currently facing the Los Angeles Kings– So, excuse the tense in which I’m writing this if you’re reading this tomorrow or later on. Anyways, as you can infer about the title of this article, there is some more no good, very bad news for the Knights. Which it less than ideal given the current state of the team.

After getting some time off from hockey for Christmas, teams are starting to get back to work and getting healthy. Unfortunately for the Knights, that doesn’t necessarily include them. The team that was rolling before the break had a true chance to take the lead in the Pacific but now, not so much.

As if things didn’t go every way but the Vegas Golden Knights early in the season things are starting to trend that way again. It was reported after starting practice back up, that there were some big players moving to the IR, or placed on COVID. However, there was one thing that looked promising and it appears he’s not quite ready to return.

During the morning skate before the game against the Kings, it was reported that Max Pacioretty, Mark Stone, and Robin Lehner were going to be game-time decisions. There was one name that they did not mention or talk about- Nolan Patrick.

Nolan Patrick has made a lot of progress trying to recover from his upper-body injury and has even participated in multiple Golden Knight practices. Now, to be fair, he was in a red no-contact jersey for some of those practices, but he did have a fourth-line regular jersey yesterday in practice. Nonetheless, before tonight’s game against the Kings they announced that he was once again going to stay inactive.

Nolan Patrick has not played a game with the Golden Knights since facing the Edmonton Oilers early on in the season. Now, it appears as though Patrick has progressed well from the injury, but based upon the status for tonight’s game, he’s not quite ready to make his return just yet.

If everything goes as planned and there are no regressions in his progress, there is a fairly good chance we could see Patrick as early as Friday’s game against the Anaheim Ducks. Regardless if he plays Friday though, I’d say his official return would be the following game against the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday.