"There was so much organized for him that it's just too bad, but what can you do, eh? The main thing is they said he would get back to 100 percent. If he comes back in March, well he still could break the record this year. In March, the games are much tougher to win, but if he doesn't do it this year he'll do it early next year."
-- Denis Brodeur Sr.
Denis Brodeur Sr. has an empty feeling inside. His youngest son is hurting for the first time in his long and historic career, and there's nothing the hockey dad from Montreal can do about it.
"I feel very bad," Martin Brodeur
's father told NHL.com. "There is nothing you can do. We're so far away. Even if we were close we couldn't do anything either."
Such is the reality of the long-term injury Brodeur suffered Saturday night. The New Jersey Devils
announced Tuesday that the franchise goalie will have surgery Thursday to repair the distal bicep in his left elbow and he will be out 3-4 months.
Brodeur remains 7 wins shy of tying Patrick Roy
's all-time record of 551 and 5 shutouts away from tying Terry Sawchuk
's all-time record of 103.
"I have spoken to him every day, including the night that it happened," Denis Brodeur Sr. said. "Of course he feels bad, but we don't know how he feels inside. He doesn't show too much. He has to take that approach because otherwise you're just crying about what happened."
Brodeur's brother, Denis Jr., called the reaction of today's news "like a bomb hitting in Montreal." The Brodeur household has been inundated with calls and interview requests from newspapers and television stations.
"You wouldn't believe it," Denis Sr. said. "RDS is coming in for an interview with me. Everybody is phoning, not only his friends, but all the TV people and reporters. Now in Montreal we have 3 hockey shows on 3 different TV stations from 9:30 until 12 so it's going to be all about (Brodeur's injury)."
Brodeur's run at history is big news throughout the NHL, but especially in Montreal, where he's from and where Roy made his Hall of Fame career.
"This year was going to be such a great year with the All-Star Game in Montreal and maybe his future with the Olympic team (in 2010)," Denis Sr. said. "He tried to work very hard to show that he's still in good shape, but I don't think (the injury) will stop these things from happening other than the All-Star Game. The All-Star Game in Montreal is like playing for your home team. All his friends are here and he would have been there."
Brodeur has been in constant contact with his family since Saturday night. They said he has not seemed depressed at all, but his emotions have been on a rollercoaster ride.
Denis Jr. said the first doctor Brodeur saw told him he would need surgery, but a second opinion sought Sunday revealed that maybe he wouldn't. After seeing another specialist on Monday, it was determined the final diagnosis required surgery.
"He called me (Sunday) and told me what it's going to be," Denis Jr. said. "I said, 'It could be worse. It's not like you have cancer, it's only your arm.' He worked all his life to accomplish what he's done and he's a couple of games away (from Roy's record). It's too bad, but he will do it later on when they say he will be 100 percent."
Brodeur has received a lot of fan support on his new web-site, www.martinbrodeur30.com, which is operated by his brother. Fans are offering their support, prayers and well wishes for a speedy recovery by writing in the guestbook.
"There was so much organized for him that it's just too bad, but what can you do, eh?" Denis Sr. said. "The main thing is they said he would get back to 100 percent. If he comes back in March, well he still could break the record this year. In March, the games are much tougher to win, but if he doesn't do it this year he'll do it early next year."
Denis Sr. is also concerned for the Devils.
New Jersey has experienced a rash of injuries so far this season. Major free-agent acquisitions Brian Rolston
(high ankle sprain) and Bobby Holik
(broken pinkie) have already missed significant time and defenseman Andy Greene
is out with a broken hand.
sat out Monday's game with upper body soreness. He's questionable for Wednesday's game against Tampa Bay. Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond
is also out with a cracked orbital bone.
"Now, my God, not only for Martin but for the Devils," Denis Sr. said. "They have had 6 injuries in 11 games. Can you imagine that?"
Contact Dan Rosen at email@example.com.