Ottawa Senators center Jason Spezza skated on his own before teammates took the ice at Scotiabank Place on Monday for the first time since undergoing surgery to repair a herniated disc earlier this month.
Spezza was projected to miss 6-8 weeks, which would put his earliest return around the end of March.
Spezza, who has two goals and five points in five games this season, has collected 228 goals and 621 points in 611 career games, all with the Senators. The Senators have won four straight and are sixth in the Eastern Conference with 24 points.
You could see out there that everybody was willing to compete, to sacrifice, even blocking shots to the end. Even in the third when we were up 5-0, guys were still working hard and blocking shots That's a nice feeling also for the future.
— Flames goalie Jonas Hiller after his team's 5-0 win over Carolina