Ottawa Senators forward Bobby Ryan said Thursday he's feeling better following season-ending surgery to repair a sports hernia and is open to staying in Ottawa after his contract runs out at the end of next season.
"I'm doing good," Ryan said in his first meeting with the media since the operation March 27. "Everything went well and I'm moving a little bit better each day. Obviously the first couple of days I didn't do much at all, but I'm starting to walk well and take stairs well and all that kind of stuff. It has been positive."
Ryan said he was hoping to wait until the end of the season to have the surgery, but he aggravated his condition when he collided with the boards in a March 22 game against the Dallas Stars and was forced to shut it down. He said that although the pain wasn't excruciating through December and January, it got worse as time progressed.
"We hoped the Olympic break would really calm it down, but the opposite happened," Ryan said. "It was beyond what we thought, I just played through it. To me it meant more to play at that point, whatever what it was going to take. When I fell into the wall in Dallas, that was it."
Ryan, the second player taken in the 2005 NHL Draft, had 23 goals and 48 points in his first season with the Senators after being acquired from the Anaheim Ducks last July. He'll be headed into the final year of his contract next season and said he could foresee a future in Ottawa. The sides can begin discussing an extension this summer.
"I said it in Anaheim that when you get drafted by an organization or traded to an organization you want to reward that organization, you want to be part of that organization for a long deal and you want to take that team to new heights to be part of something special," Ryan said. "That's how we felt when we were traded here and coming here. The organization is a first-class organization, they treat you like family. I think everyone in the coaching room genuinely cares about each and every individual, and that says a lot about the people they've put in place here. That's something you want to be around.
"I love it here. We (Ryan and fiancée Danielle Rhodes) love it here, more importantly. It has been a great change for us. When the time comes, if that's the route [general manager] Bryan [Murray] wants to go with to sit down and have a conversation, we'll certainly do that."
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