Apr 4, 2012, 2:26 PM EDT
The hit had major ramifications. Firstly, it snapped Toronto into action as the Leafs proceeded to score three times in the next 16 minutes.
Secondly, it ended Gunnarsson’s season.
Today, the Leafs announced Gunnarsson suffered a separated shoulder on the play, an injury that will require 4-6 weeks of recovery. It’ll prevent him from playing in the final two games of the season and most likely the 2012 World Hockey Championships, where he had hoped to represent Team Sweden on home soil.
Not surprisingly, Gunnarsson was pissed about the injury.
Surprisingly, he wasn’t pissed at Foligno.
“I was pissed off,” he told TSN. “I was mad at myself for letting [myself] get injured; I didn’t protect myself the way I should have. I just wanted to go out there and keep playing, but it turned out I couldn’t do it.”
Gunnarsson tried to play another shift after the Foligno hit, but only lasted 51 seconds before calling it a night. He said he should’ve been more aware of his surroundings and protected himself better from Foligno, who goes 6-foot-2, 215-pounds.
“Situations similar to that happen a lot during the season,” he said. “That was just a bad move by me. I usually come out of it in a good way, try to spin off the guy and take the hit in the right way, but this time I didn’t do it and I’ve got to pay for it.”
It’s an unfortunate end to Gunnarsson’s solid campaign. He averaged a career-high 21:42 per game and was one shy of tying a career-high in assists.
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