Kimmo Timonen’s Career Could be Over
Lying in a hospital bed in Finland, Kimmo Timonen was just as calm as he had been for 15 years on the ice. He knew there is history of blood disease in his family. He knew he had a blood clot in his right calf and that his chest didn't feel quite right.
Still, he wasn't all that worried.
(Listen to Flyers insider Dave Isaac talk about the future of Kimmo Timonen)
The next morning he woke up to speak with a well-respected doctor and finally the scare was put in him. The clots didn't stop in his calf, they were in both lungs also.
"I'll try to put this in a way where you can understand where we are," the doctor told the 39-year-old defenseman. "People just die from this kind of stuff."
From then on in, Timonen knew he could have been in trouble. The defenseman was in his homeland training for what he thought would be his last season, doing exercises he hadn't done in years.
It's become clear to him after realizing the severity of the clots, understanding more about his family's disorder, protein C deficiency, and knowing he will likely be on blood thinners for the rest of his life, last season was almost certainly his finale.
"I wish we were here to announce that we were here to announce that Kimmo is here to continue his career, but we're gonna announce neither," general manager Ron Hextall said at a press conference on the eve of training camp. "We've been through a process with our medical staff and our doctors where we really don't have any definitive answers."
The only thing that's known for sure is that Timonen, a four-time All-Star and four-time Olympian, has the same blood disorder as his mother and both of his brothers.