In a time when it seems like every new headline eats away at your hope for humanity, it’s refreshing to see some positive news. Hockey fans everywhere, and Flyers fans especially, were treated to such an occurrence Tuesday, as the Flyers tweeted two pictures showing Oskar Lindblom back on the ice.
For those needing a little refresher, Oskar Lindblom was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma on December 13, 2019. Ewing Sarcoma is a rare form of bone cancer that only registers about 1,000 new cases per year, and children survive more frequently than adults, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. The diagnosis came in the middle of what looked to be Lindblom’s breakout year, with 11G-7A-18P in 30GP, on pace to smash his previous career high of 33 points in 81 games during the 2018-2019 season. Lindblom was a key part in the Flyers ability to hang with the juggernauts in the Metro Division, and enjoyed great success on a line with Sean Couturier and Travis Konecny. When the diagnosis happened and the initial sadness regarding the uncertainty of his health was addressed, it was one of those “you have GOT to be kidding me” moments. Every Flyers fan was depressed about it for those two reasons, and obviously his health took precedence.
But now with the NHL looking to make a comeback, it appears Lindblom is as well. The Flyers were right. It was without a doubt the best tweet I saw today, and probably all year. To pull back the curtain a little bit, my mom has beaten cancer twice, so anything and everything relating to beating cancer really hits home for me, as I’m sure it does for many of you reading this. Cancer affects everyone, including professional athletes, and it always feels great to hear when someone beats it. Seeing a young man like Lindblom with such a bright future kick cancer and get back on the ice in such a short time warms your heart and may even bring a tear to your eye. He may not be back on the ice when the playoffs get going, but being back on the ice must have been a major milestone in his recovery and I’m so happy he’s achieved it.
What makes this even better is that they tweeted it at 1:23 on June 23rd, honoring Lindblom’s number 23. Of all the things you love to see, this has to be at or near the top of the list. It’s not over as we haven’t heard that he’s completely cancer free, but I think I can speak for all hockey fans when we’re all behind him in his fight, and we are all #OskarStrong.