Tyler Seguin (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Tyler Seguin is back skating, but the Dallas Stars aren’t yet certain he’ll be able to return for the first game of the post-season. Seguin, 24, has missed the past eight games following a 15 percent cut of his Achilles tendon.
Stars sniper Tyler Seguin has missed the past eight games following a 15 percent cut of his Achilles tendon, but Dallas got some good news when Seguin began skating this week. Don’t take that to mean Seguin is certain to return for the opening game of the post-season, though.
According to Stars coach Lindy Ruff, the team is encouraged by the way Seguin’s recovery has gone thus far, but the original diagnosis was that Seguin would miss anywhere from three to four weeks. At this point, he’s been on the sideline for 21 days, and Ruff was trying to be cautiously optimistic when asked about Seguin’s return when the Stars open the playoffs.
“He’s skating in a limited fashion, I would say somewhere between the 50 and 75 percent range,” Ruff said, via Mark Stepneski. “There are times he pushes it, but we’re trying to be a little cautious with that, too. He’s progressing nicely, and we just hope to keep on progressing here.”
Ruff added it was “too early” to comment on a return date.
Seguin is a game-changing talent for the Stars, and you need look no further than Seguin’s 33 goals this season to understand what he brings to the table for Dallas. Over the past two seasons, Seguin ranks seventh among all players with 70 goals in 143 games and getting him back into the lineup would mean the high-flying Stars offense has yet another weapon in its arsenal.
It doesn’t seem out of the question that Seguin could return for Game 1, even if that were in a limited role, but it’s hard to know whether the Stars would risk rushing back Seguin should they draw the top seed in the Central Division and get to open the playoffs against a wild-card team. If the Stars do draw the Minnesota Wild in the first round, they may be able to keep Seguin out of the lineup in Game 1 in hopes the extra day rest is enough to get the 24-year-old winger that much closer to 100 percent.
Luckily for the Stars, they’ve had stellar performances from Jamie Benn, Ales Hemsky, Jason Spezza and Patrick Sharp since Seguin went down. Over the past eight games, each has scored at least six points, and Benn is leading the way with five goals and eight points over that span.
If Dallas defeats Colorado Thursday night and St. Louis falls to Chicago in regulation, the Stars will have locked up the top spot in the Central Division just one season after failing to make the post-season.