The injury update on Edmonton Oilers star forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is a positive one according to a Ryan Dittrick report found on the hockey club’s official app.
Dittrick says that Nugent-Hopkins “isn’t quite ready to step back on the ice” but he is progressing nicely from the surgery performed on his left shoulder.
The 20-year old underwent surgery roughly six weeks ago to repair a torn labrum that prematurely ended his season; a frustrating season to say the least for the former first overall draft pick. This past season Nugent-Hopkins scored just 4 goals and added 20 assists in 40 games. Hardly the numbers the Oilers were expecting from the sophomore following an impressive rookie campaign that saw him put up 18 goals and 52 points in 62 games.
With any luck, Nugent-Hopkins will be ready for the start of next season given the procedure takes four-to-six months to recover according to Dittrick and what the young center told him at an Oilers event over the weekend:
It’s going really well right now. The first couple of weeks are pretty slow and you can’t move it too much, so the first part is getting your range of motion back. I’m starting to strengthen it a bit now and it feels good. It feels better every day, so we’re definitely taking some steps and I want to be ready as soon as possible.
Nugent-Hopkins admitted that the shoulder issue was bothering him for a couple of years and finally decided that a fresh start to next season with no nagging injuries was the best scenario for both he and the hockey club.
The Oilers will benefit immensely from a healthy Nugent-Hopkins back at center next season, even it means starting the year without him. A full 82-game schedule next year, the Oilers the Burnaby, BC native for the long haul and so far it sounds like that will be the case.
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