RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The Carolina Hurricanes got some good news on Wednesday.
Defensemen Tony DeAngelo and Brett Pesce are now out of COVID-19 protocol. The bad news is, they’re still a week away from suiting up.
“They’re free to play but we can’t get them here,” lamented head coach Rod Brind’Amour.
The Canes picked a bad time to head west. Carolina is on a five-game road swing with the first four games of the trip being played in Canada. The Canes defensemen were sidelined beginning on Nov. 29.
Canada has a law in which anyone who contracts COVID-19 must quarantine 14 days before being able to enter the country.
Had the Canes been playing state-side, the two would be cleared to suit up.
“It’s the way it is right now, unfortunately,” said Brind’Amour shaking his head. “The good news is they’re able to skate and not just sit on the couch and then come into a game. The bad news is, they should be playing.”
He added: “I think from their standpoint it’s frustrating but I think it’s good they’ll at least have been on the ice and you’re not worried about that major rust from not skating for a long, long time.”
DeAngelo and Pesce should be more than ready to go when the Canes head to Minnesota on Tuesday, their first game back from Canada. The two will most certainly be put through their paces leading up to the game by Canes strength and conditioning coach Bill Burniston, one of the best in the business.
“They obviously want to be here,” said Canes defenseman Brady Skjei about his conversations with DeAngelo and Pesce. “I think they’re healthy, feeling good and skating now. We miss them but we don’t want to rush anything, playing it safe and we’ll be happy to have them back when they’re ready.”
Which, unfortunately, will be longer than it has to be because of where the Canes are playing.