A postseason-ending concussion didn’t scare the Bruins out of making a long-term commitment to defenseman Brandon Carlo, as the B’s inked the 6-foot-5 defender to a six-year, $24.6 million deal on Wednesday afternoon.
And Carlo’s update on his recovery from the blow probably helped ease their concerns.
“I’m feeling over the moon today, but in general, before all this contract stuff, I’ve been feeling very good,” Carlo offered. “I’ve been feeling great, completely back to normal, 100 percent for well over a month and a half now.”
Knocked out of the 2021 playoffs after a hard finish from the Islanders’ Cal Clutterbuck in Game 3 at Nassau Coliseum, the concussion was Carlo’s fourth confirmed concussion since over the last 50 months. Speaking after Boston’s elimination, which came three games after Carlo’s departure and with the Bruins losing all three games without Carlo available, the parties noted that it was unlikely that Carlo would’ve been cleared in time for a Game 7 had the Bruins survived on Long Island.
But that’s not to suggest that Carlo’s recovery was a slow one, as the 24-year-old acknowledged.
“My recovery was pretty quick within that guideline, and I felt very good,” said Carlo. “Everything is good there; training has been going well. That hasn’t thrown me off in any way. I’m just continuing to excel in that and I’m feeling really good.
“I definitely recognize that these injuries can affect people in different ways, and it’s something to be taken very seriously. But for myself, with the way that I recovered from my concussions and through the injury process, I never felt, in any way, shape, or form, that my career was going to be ending any time soon. I think, just going through all of these situations, I’ve learned more and grown a lot from it. From the focal point of if it was going to affect me going forward, I don’t feel that way. I’m still a young guy, I still feel very sharp in my mind. I feel great in my body.”
Carlo, who set career-highs in assists (16) and points (19) in 2019-20, also noted that he has yet to step back on the ice, but that’s not due to health, but rather his own preference when decompressing in the offseason.
“I like to take my time a little bit away off the ice,” the Colorado native admitted. “I’m going to get back on next week.
“I fully anticipate that’s all going to go very well. I’ve been doing some stuff with motion and spinning around in my offseason training that I’ve felt very good through. I like to just get away from the game for a little bit, but I’m excited to get back on the ice next week and fully expect to be feeling great.”
Drafted with the No. 37 overall pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, Carlo has totaled 15 goals and 55 points, along with a plus-58 rating, in 324 games with the Bruins since the start of the 2016-17 season.
Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.