BROSSARD - It's been especially tough for Jonathan Drouin to watch his teammates struggle of late.
That's understandable, of course, given that Drouin is sidelined for an extended period of time after undergoing wrist surgery on November 18.
And his services won't be available for quite a while. His recovery period was expected to be a minimum of eight weeks, which puts his return at some point in mid-January.
Speaking for the first time since the procedure was performed at the Montreal General Hospital, the 24-year-old forward shed some light on his current state of mind.
"It's disappointing, but it's just a part of hockey. I'm not the first guy to suffer an injury, and I won't be the last. It's up to me to have a good attitude and a good mindset," said Drouin, who sustained the injury on November 15 against the Capitals in Washington. "You just don't want to get lost in all of this because you're out for a long time."
Video: Jonathan Drouin provides an update on his injury
As for the nature of the injury, the Canadiens' No. 92 confirmed that it was, in fact, a torn tendon which occurred as a result of a fall during the third period.
According to Drouin, it had absolutely nothing to do with a hard hit from Capitals captain Alexander Ovechkin in the middle frame.
"It happened on the first shift in the period. It was just bad luck," mentioned Drouin. "It's tough to see that nothing happenened from a big hit, but a fall does this."
The good news is that his recovery thus far is going as planned.
"I'm getting a splint. I was in a cast for two weeks. I'm going to have a lot of rehab to do. I don't know exactly when I'll start skating again, but I'll begin riding the bike slowly and train a bit. I don't really want to get ahead of myself and think about when I'm playing just yet. We're taking things day by day," explained Drouin. "The doctors said everything should be fine. It's an injury that happens a lot in hockey. I'm not worried. Everything will get back to normal with time."
You'll recall that Drouin was off to a remarkable start this season before going down. He had seven goals and 15 points in 19 games.
And picking up right where he left off is the ultimate goal.
"I was feeling more and more confident every game. I was building something that was taking me to another level a bit, so it was hard getting injured at a time like that," admitted Drouin. "I was feeling good and I was playing well. But, it will come back. It's all a part of the sport we play. That's the way it is."
In the meantime, Drouin is still making his presence felt around the team by attending practices at the Bell Sports Complex.
It's a real sign of support amidst the current winless streak that reached six games with a loss to the New Jersey Devils on Thursday.
"Every athlete will tell you that when you can't make a difference and when you can only watch things happen, it's tough. Like the rest of the guys, I'm also frustrated with what's going on and the results we've been getting," said Drouin. "I'm around the team and I'm being positive, though. I watch practice to show that we're going to get out of this together, and I know that we're confident in our abilities."
The six-year NHL veteran is adamant that his teammates will put this bad stretch behind them in short order.
It's all about pulling in the same direction as a cohesive unit.
"I think the solution is in the room. That's the only way we're going to get out of it. We're all in the same boat," said Drouin. "It's a tough situation, but I think we have good leaders and good veterans to keep the young guys calm and everybody on the same page. Nobody is pointing fingers at anyone else, so it's already good there."