Kevin Shattenkirk met with the media in Florida on Friday and said (NYR):
- "I feel good. It's come a long way. I feel like I have my stride back, which is good, I kind of have that last little push that I feel like I was lacking before the surgery. It's getting better and better every day and now that I am able to skate with these guys, now you take little steps and try to immerse yourself into practice and situations that you can't really replicate without playing with the team."
- On just being around the team, "that is a big part of it. It gives you something to keep striving for, to know that you have taken that next step in your recovery and rehab. Now it's starting at the bottom and working my way up with these guys and seeing if I am able to play at that level."
- On the different team he has come back to, "it's hard thing to go through for these guys, harder than what I had to do. I was on the outside looking in, for these guys to have to go through it and play games while in the midst of knowing that changes were going to come. That is a hard thing mentally to work through. For me, I felt for these guys and it was tough being at home because they were on the road a lot and being away from these guys. The way that they handled it was phenomenal, to be a teammate of these guys and know that they were doing everything they could to work through it and be professional."
- On how it's been, "it's been good. It's fun to get out with these guys and practice. It just shows me the level that you have to compete at to play in this league. Once you are coming back from injury and skating by yourself you think you are ready to go and then you play with your teammates and practice with them and then you realize you are not quite that close. Being around the team again is something that any athlete will tell you that they miss the most. I'm enjoying it now."
- Do you have a timetable to return, "no, no idea yet. We are really, it's not so much of a set time as much as it's a feel thing. I know I don't feel right yet. The good thing is that it's improving and I think that is all I can ask for, that we take little step forwards every time."
- On not having a lot of practice time, 'that is the hard part. You don't want the coaches to have to create practice time for you. I'll find my to get back into it and eventually it's going to come to a point where I will play a game and see how it feels."