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Slow and steady the pace for Getzlaf

Monday, 09.14.2009 / 9:58 AM / 2009-2010 Season Preview

By Eric Stephens - NHL.com Correspondent

"The main thing is to be ready to go. I'll take the necessary steps to do that. That's what we're looking at right now. I'm kind of taking it easy in camp right now and taking the little steps now so that it doesn't affect me long term."
-- Ryan Getzlaf

Ryan Getzlaf has been back on the ice for nearly two weeks but the Anaheim Ducks star center took his first official steps toward getting himself in position for the team's Oct. 3 opener against San Jose after undergoing sports hernia surgery in late July.

Getzlaf, who finished sixth in the NHL in scoring with 91 points last season, said he plans to play in at least one or two exhibition games this month and that he continues to be on a timetable to do just that.

Anaheim plays its final two games of the preseason on Sept. 25 against San Jose and Sept. 27 against Los Angeles.

"The main thing is to be ready to go," Getzlaf said. "I'll take the necessary steps to do that. That's what we're looking at right now. I'm kind of taking it easy in camp right now and taking the little steps now so that it doesn't affect me long term."

Getzlaf skated with his teammates following the Ducks' intrasquad scrimmage as they opening training camp Sunday at Anaheim Ice. The two-time All-Star did not participate in any contact drills and it may be several days before that happens. 

"Today was more of a feeling-out kind of day," he said. "We worked pretty hard today. I just have to tire it out and make sure things were still good. The problem is getting into contact because you get those unexpected blows. Those are things where you need to be strong."

Getzlaf said that he played through some aches and pains during the Stanley Cup playoffs but determined that they were minor in nature. It wasn't until he hurt himself during off-season workouts that he decided to have the surgery that was recommended following an MRI exam. The procedure was done by Dr. Bill Meyers in Philadelphia, who has performed similar surgeries on Anaheim teammates Todd Marchant, Jean-Sebastien Giguere and former Ducks center Samuel Pahlsson, now with Columbus.

"I talked to [Todd] him quite a bit about the recovery and that kind of stuff," Getzlaf said. "What it would take."

Because of the surgery, Getzlaf was forced to sit out the Olympic orientation camp for Team Canada last month. Though he's still considered to be a strong candidate for the loaded Canadian roster, the 24-year-old pivot understood he took the chance of not be able to make another impression on executive director Steve Yzerman and coach Mike Babcock.

"It was tough to an extent," Getzlaf said. The main thing is to be ready for our season. The Olympic camp was one thing. I owe it to this team to be ready to go in October. That's where we're at and we did the surgery accordingly."
Quote of the Day

My focus is always just to play as well as I can and do my job, no matter where the faceoff is.

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