J.P. Dumont does not remember the hit. He also can’t explain exactly what’s wrong. The Nashville Predators’ forward does know one thing for certain, though.
“I got knocked out,” he said Sunday.
The hit Dumont received from Dallas defenseman Stephane Robidas early in the second period of the Oct. 3 season-opener caused the Predators’ forward to miss the remainder of that game and the two that followed. He had an assist and one shot on goal before he was injured.
He skated on his own Sunday morning and was optimistic about his return to the lineup.
“We’ll see how I feel (Monday),” Dumont said. “They day after is always the key … (but) I’m getting better and better every day.
Dumont stressed that he did not sustain a concussion.
“I passed all my tests (last) Monday),” he said. “People ask me what’s wrong and all I can say is that I feel funny.
“Trust me, I want to play. I worked my (butt) off this summer to get in shape and get off to a good start. The first seven minutes were pretty good.”
Dumont will not play Monday against Edmonton (7 p.m., Sommet Center) but with four games in six days, there are plenty of opportunities for him to make his return before the end of the week.
Coach Barry Trotz said that whenever Dumont does get back in the lineup, the most likely scenario is for him to step right back into his spot on the top line with Jason Arnott and Steve Sullivan.
“We’ll see how the game goes,” Trotz said. “… They have good chemistry and they were good in Game One.
“I would think he’s back on track, hopefully Wednesday or Thursday may be it.”
Barring injury, goalies Pekka Rinne and Dan Ellis will get an equal amount of playing time this week.
Rinne will play Monday against Edmonton and Thursday against Chicago – both at home. Ellis will play Wednesday at Dallas and Saturday at Washington.
“Knowing is nice,” Ellis said. “It helps with breaking down video of the teams. From a preparation standpoint it’s better knowing what’s coming.”
Through Saturday’s games, Nashville was the only team in the league with two goalies who had goals-against averages of less than 2.00 – Rinne’s was 1.02 and Ellis’ was 1.92. Both also had save percentages of better than .930.
“They’ve both been playing really well so we sort of looked at the (upcoming) games and … sort of picked opponents that we think they can handle well,” Trotz said. “So we have sort of a game-plan for the rest of the week here.”
Rookie center Colin Wilson said a blood treatment procedure he underwent two weeks ago to promote healing in his injured groin was effective. He skated with the team the last two days.
“The big thing now is just to trust that it is healed,” Wilson, who played just one preseason game, said.
Trotz said it is possible Wilson could make his professional (and NHL) debut this week.
• The five goals allowed through the first three games is the fewest since 2003-04 (also five). The six goals scored is the fewest since 2001-02 when Nashville had just four.
• Through Saturday, Nashville was one of three teams that has not been assessed major penalty. Florida and St. Louis were the others.
• Jordin Tootoo (hip flexor) is said to be improving. No timetable has been set for his possible return.