by Kevin Zalaznik // 3.20.2013 // Feature
TROY, NY – Walking along the outside of the boards after today’s practice, Joe Whitney hung his arm around the shoulder of Mattias Tedenby. It was a glad-to-see-you moment as Tedenby was reunited with his teammates for the first time in more than a month.
On Feb. 15 at the Glens Falls Civic Center, Tedenby was assisted off the ice in the third period. Making a move to the front of the net, he was struck up high with the skate of a Phantoms player.
“Everything went so fast,” Tedenby said. “I was a little bit scared, because I didn’t know how deep it was. I didn’t know anything, because I didn’t feel anything at first. I saw [Athletic Trainer Kevin Morley] come and put some pressure on it.”
Since then he hasn’t skated by himself or with his teammates. A gesture like Whitney’s today is a clear indication Tedenby’s return is a welcome sight for the Devils.
“Just from a personal stand point, everyone is glad to see him back,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “He’s in good spirits and, hopefully, we can put this behind him. It was a pretty scary thing that happened, but the guys are glad to see him back. I know he’s happy just to be back and being around the guys. I think that’s probably the best thing for him.”
Tedenby, who wore a full shield during practice, has missed the last 13 games. He indicated that the wound has “healed pretty well” even though it took longer than expected. Now his focus is returning to game shape.
“I felt so-so,” Tedenby said after the session. “The conditioning, the timing and everything are a little bit off. If I have some more practices and stuff like that it’s going to come.”
The Swede has played 78 career AHL games, producing 18 goals and 24 assists for 42 points. This season, he has appeared in 31 games, registering nine goals and eight assists for 17 points.
His career also includes 105 NHL games with nine goals and 20 assists for 29 points. Before his injury, he had played four games with New Jersey this year.
When Tedenby will return to the lineup is still undecided; however, his presence at today’s practice is a move in the right direction.
“It’s just a matter of getting him on the ice right now,” Kowalsky said. “Obviously, he’s wearing the full cage right now and he’s still going to have to consult with some doctors, but he’s cleared to get on the ice and get exercising.
“It’s been a while now since he’s done anything. I think it’s just a matter of getting him back on the ice, getting him back around the guys, getting him back into shape. As far as medically getting him cleared, we’ll see where we’re at.”