Connect with us

avalanche news

VIDEO: Sam Girard Opens Up About Decision To Enter NHL Player Assistance Program, Return To Lineup



nhl sam girard

On Sunday evening, Samuel Girard will make his return to the Colorado Avalanche, playing his first game since entering the NHL/NHLPA Player Assistance Program back on Nov. 24.

On Saturday, Girard took part in a full practice for the Avalanche at Family Sports Arena. During practice, he switched to a burgundy powerplay jersey, a good indication that he’s coming back.

After practice, he confirmed that’s the case, and spoke to the media for around four minutes discussing his decision to enter the program, and why he needed to do it.

Here’s Girard’s full availablility.

I asked him why it was so important for him to be open and honest in the statement he made after entering the program with the NHL and NHLPA.

“I was just tired of hiding everything,” Girard said. “Hiding stuff, at one point, just became too much for me. I couldn’t leave it inside, I had to talk about it. I know there is other people outside struggling with the same thing. It feels good to talk about it. If you need some help, it’s okay to reach for some help. That’s something that I learned over there. I’m excited that I did it, and very excited to be back to play my first game tomorrow.”

Avalanche Head Coach Jared Bednar said there will be no easing Girard back into the lineup. He’s ready to go.

“He feels really good,” Bednar said. “He looks like he’s been skating well, doing some extra work over the holidays. Now he’s been working with Toby (Petersen) and in practice and he feels good and ready to go.”

Before Girard left the team, he had been paired with Bowen Byram. That won’t be the case on Sunday, at least to start.

“Probably play with Jack on the third pair,” Bednar said. “I liked Bo and Manson’s game last night, so we’ll try to keep those pairs very similar.”

Colorado's premier coverage of the Avalanche from professional hockey people. Evan Rawal, Editor-in-Chief. Part of the National Hockey Now family.

This site is in no way associated with the Colorado Avalanche or the NHL. Copyright © 2023 National Hockey Now.