SAN JOSE – Injured Sharks forward Raffi Torres was spotted skating lightly on his own at the Sharks’ practice facility on Wednesday morning, as he attempts to return from chronic right knee issues.
Torres had a problematic ACL completely removed in the offseason, after originally having surgery on Sep. 26, 2013, forcing him to miss most of last season.
Coach Todd McLellan admitted the 33-year-old Torres is nowhere near a return, but didn't rule it out at some point.
“I would be surprised to see Raffi back any time soon,” McLellan said. “He’s out skating and doing his therapy. It’s an individual that’s on the ice on his own, just to kind of experiment with it, but he’s got a long way to go as far as physically recovering, getting in shape, and then mentally recovering from it.
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“But, we’re not counting him out. If anybody can fight back, it will be Raffi, and he’s done it once before. He can do it again. I met with him today, and he had a smile on his face, which was really good to see.”
“He’s going to do everything in his power to come back and help the team, but he does have a long path to go.”
Torres is in the second year of a three-year, $6 million contract he signed with the Sharks on June 20, 2013. He played just five regular season games late in the 2013-14 season, and all seven games of the first round playoff loss to Los Angeles.
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Joe Thornton and Mirco Mueller did not practice with the Sharks on Wednesday. Thornton recently returned from a four-game absence with a left shoulder injury, while Mueller continues to nurse his wrist and remains on injured reserve.
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Andrew Desjardins was back at practice on Wednesday after the birth of his son, Ames, on Tuesday night.
Desjardins accompanied the team on its quick road trip to Phoenix on Monday, but got a call in the middle of the night. He boarded an 8:20 a.m. flight back to the Bay Area on Tuesday morning to be with his wife Mandy at a local Los Gatos hospital. Ames was born at 9 p.m. in the middle of the Sharks' 3-2 win over the Coyotes.
“It was an awesome experience,” Desjardins said.