Chicago Blackhawks winger Patrick Kane said Monday he's "a little ahead of schedule" in his recovery from left wrist surgery and hopes to play in up to four of the team's preseason games.
Kane, who threw out the first pitch at the Chicago Cubs' game against the Red and later sang "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" with Hawks teammates Dave Bolland, Jamal Mayers, Niklas Hjalmarsson and Viktor Stalberg, said the splint on his wrist will be removed Sept. 15.
"I get the splint off the 15th so after that I should be able to do pretty much everything," Kane said. "I've been skating and working out. For a while there, I couldn't go full equipment with the cast. Once I got the cast off that's when I started trying to get back into the flow quickly."
Kane had surgery on July 19 to repair a scaphoid fracture in his left wrist suffered late in the 2010-11 season. The winger has taken some backhand shots but can't yet take any other kind of shot until the splint comes off. The first practice of camp is scheduled for Sept. 17 and Kane hopes to be on the ice and then participate in exhibition games leading up to the season opener Oct. 7 in Dallas against the Stars.
"I've always believed training camp in a real big time of year for myself to get ready for the regular season," Kane said. "It's definitely something you want to use.
"I love those exhibition games. (They) definitely help you get back into a game-style of hockey. It's something you really want to use to your advantage. I played about four last year. I'd probably like to play around (that many) again this year."
Kane added that the injury shouldn't prevent him from starting the regular season at full strength.
"I have a couple of weeks," he said. "Let's say I get (the splint) off the 15th (then) I have three weeks until the opening game in Dallas. It should be enough time to get myself back into shape with the left arm and shooting pucks."
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