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Bryan Bickell Plays First NHL Game Since MS Diagnosis

April 5, 2017

Carolina Hurricanes forward Bryan Bickell said he felt “OK” physically Tuesday in his first NHL game since last fall before it was announced he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

Bickell also said he was fine from a mental perspective and was mostly engaged in the game, a 5-3 loss at the Minnesota Wild. Overall, Bickell played 12:35, registered three hits and was a minus-2.

“It was a little rough start, but emotionally it was good to get back out there,” he said. “You just think about all the thoughts and things you’ve gone through to get to this moment and the people that reached out and helped and the support. It means a lot for all those people to get me to where I am now and I’m happy to be back here and we’ll just take it game-by-game and move onto the next one.“

The 31-year-old Bickell, who was acquired by Carolina last summer from the Chicago Blackhawks, had played 10 games with the Charlotte Checkers from Feb. 25 through April 2 before being recalled by the Hurricanes on Monday.

“The last couple of days it has been a lot of travel but we have a day to rest and get ready for a home game,” Bickell said. “It’ll be nice to see the family. I haven’t seen them in a while. It’ll be nice to sit back, relax with them and regroup and hopefully we get a start better than we did today.”

Bickell had one goal in seven games this season with the Hurricanes in October before taking some time off following the announcement of his diagnosis.

Via Yahoo Sports