SEVERE WX : Winter Weather Advisory View Alerts

Demko returns to ice after lengthy concussion rehab

Thatcher Demko returned to game action after missing the first 18 contests of the year with concussion symptoms.

Posted: Nov 28, 2018 1:03 AM

Utica, N.Y. - Thatcher Demko returned to the ice last week after missing the first 18 games of the season due to concussion protocol.

The 22-year-old netminder sustained the head injury during Vancouver Canucks training camp in September. Both he and the organization made sure to take it slow, and not rush him in his recovery.

"You can play through a hurt wrist, knee or whatever it is," said Demko. "With a brain, you have to really take your time and make sure everything's good to go."

While he was out, the Comets struggled, coming into his season debut against the Laval Rocket last Wednesday on a four game losing streak and sitting in the basement of the North Division.

That, in Demko's words, was one of the hardest parts of the process.

"You just want to be out there," he said. "It's always tough watching. We lost a handful of games in a row. I knew I was really close to coming back, but making sure to take those extra couple of days to get to 100 percent was a little tough."

In his debut, Demko made 19 saves on 21 shots and helped the Comets win their first game in 11 days.

That was his first meaningful game action since Game 5 of the first round series in the Calder Cup Playoffs back on April 29. Finally, the long journey was complete.

"I didn't put too much pressure on myself and it was a tough road back," he said. "Being back on the ice was really nice."

On Saturday, he was between the pipes against the Belleville Senators for his second start, where he made 26 saves on 28 shots. The Comets won 4-2 and extended their winning streak to three straight.

"We're excited to have him back," said Comets head coach, Trent Cull. "We talked about him having to blow some rust off, but I think he’s come back and made some real solid saves for us when we needed him."

The bench boss had especially high praise for his game against the Sens.

"I thought he was really tested in our last game where we were tired, three in four playing against a fresh team," Cull said. "I thought he did a really good job down the stretch in that game."

Demko, himself, assessed his play over the first two games.

"I had some rust for sure," he said. "I felt like I could’ve done a couple of things differently on the goals that were scored, but I can’t hang myself up on that. I know I’m going to be a little bit rusty coming back, but I definitely feel like it’s a good place to start."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1973308

Reported Deaths: 51350
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings2611819909
Queens2604189526
Suffolk1913793303
Nassau1753923102
Bronx1731096365
New York1303844306
Westchester1245352236
Erie805561689
Richmond698671740
Monroe599441033
Orange45583782
Rockland45345941
Onondaga35576660
Dutchess27616433
Albany23409343
Oneida21291497
Niagara17888332
Broome17175348
Saratoga14222160
Ulster12835241
Schenectady12289192
Rensselaer10526136
Putnam1007991
Chautauqua8256132
Chemung7068133
Oswego690990
Ontario676591
Steuben6212141
St. Lawrence613794
Sullivan603268
Cayuga581090
Jefferson540863
Wayne515467
Cattaraugus506880
Genesee5014121
Herkimer4883107
Clinton447232
Madison425785
Tompkins401949
Fulton399786
Livingston394358
Montgomery3842114
Columbia380399
Cortland351560
Warren333756
Tioga333358
Wyoming321751
Allegany314183
Otsego313646
Greene308174
Chenango303173
Washington281355
Orleans271683
Lewis242333
Franklin237512
Delaware211936
Seneca185356
Schoharie152015
Essex148926
Yates109826
Schuyler97913
Hamilton3002
Unassigned184111
Out of NY0216
Rome
Cloudy
43° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 38°
Binghamton
Cloudy
40° wxIcon
Hi: 49° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 34°
Rome
Cloudy
43° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 38°
Rome
Cloudy
43° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 38°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve
Enter the Rock Your Body Giveaway from Alivana Aesthetics
Looking for work or looking to hire? Check out the WKTV Job Fair!