Sep 25, 2013, 3:59 PM EDT
Kris Versteeg is ready to go.
That’s the news out of Florida on Wednesday, and it’s no small news — Versteeg has been medically cleared to return to game action for the first time since tearing his ACL in March.
Recovering from major knee surgery in six months? Pretty impressive. How did he manage to pull it off?
“I’ve talked to a lot of guys who have had it done like [Tomas] Kopecky and [Scottie] Upshall, you just trust their opinion, more so you got to trust your doctor, trust your surgeon what he did to you is going to make you better first, and understand that and go through your physical therapy,’’ Versteeg told the Florida Sun-Sentinel. “The staff here in Florida did a tremendous job with me the first two months, then I went home [to Lethrbridge] and worked with a guy named Tim back home and my own trainer and they got me to where I am today.”
Versteeg, 27, tore up his knee during a game against Tampa Bay on Mar. 12 and underwent surgery shortly thereafter. While some thought he wouldn’t be ready for the start of the season, Versteeg — third on the Panthers in scoring (54 points) during the 2011-12 campaign — trained extensively over the summer to get healthy.
Now he figures to be a big part of a young Florida team looking to make amends for last year’s disastrous 30th-place finish.
“It’s definitely a lot of commitment,” Versteeg said. “I’m excited to what I can do this year.’’
Versteeg will make his preseason debut on Thursday in Tampa Bay.
- More like it? Avs crush Canucks 15
- Video: Beauties from Perry, Eberle and Duchene 4
- Ghost Time: Flyers recall Gostisbehere from AHL 25
- Trotz calls Healy’s comments on Ovechkin (and Ovechkin’s mom) ‘disrespectful’ 26
- Report: Billionaire wants NHL team in Vegas; new Coyotes owner ‘sees flipping the team as a good investment’ 23
- Chara has PCL tear, out 4-6 weeks 20
- Coburn, MacDonald out four weeks with lower-body injuries 20
- Red-hot Quick sets new Kings’ franchise shutout record 10
- Reports: Chara could miss at least 4-6 weeks with knee injury 13
- Video: Red Wings’ stars stun Penguins with late surge 32
- Video: Two quick third-period goals propel Flyers over rival Penguins (82)
- Updated: Kings’ Voynov arrested for domestic assault, suspended indefinitely (78)
- Babcock: ‘Price definitely initiates contact’ in disallowed Datsyuk goal (59)
- ‘It’s stupid': Tempers flare after Kesler’s late charge on Granlund (54)
- Lucic apologizes for obscene gesture: ‘I’m obviously not proud of what I did there’ (45)