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Update on Keith Primeau

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers

Philadelphia Flyers center Keith Primeau has been among a group of players skating at the team's training facility in Voorhees, New Jersey. Primeau was available after skating on Tuesday morning and took part in a brief media session. Below are excerpts of Primeau updating his condition as he continues to recover from a concussion in time for training camp beginning September 14.

Keith Primeau: "There's really nothing new to report. I'm trying to put myself in a position to be in the best possible shape I can be for camp. I'm trying to become or maintain being symptom free as best I can, and then evaluate it when we get to camp. That means evaluating it with one, my family, two, the team and three, the doctors. They are giving me the room and freedom to do that. I know that [training camp] is fast approaching and there are a lot of difficult decisions to be made in the next couple of weeks."

On looking at his status in terms of team leadership:
"They began to address it last year and they've begun to address it more over the summer. They have begun to move forward as though I'm not a part of the equation and I understand that because I don't want to hamstring the team, the guys or the organization. That's kind of why I put a timeframe on it. It didn't come from them to say, 'you know, Keith, if you're not ready for camp then you can't play.' It's just that's my sense, is that it's now 30 months since I played competitive hockey. Conditioning becomes a factor. The issue of the injury becomes a factor.

"I swear that I haven't spent a lot of time…through the first part of this I spent far too much time thinking about it, trying to figure out the outcome and trying to decide what my future held. As I continue to improve, and I feel better on a regular basis, I just feel fortunate and privileged, so I just come to the rink excited to put my stuff on and go out there and practice with the guys. I feel good about being able to workout and go in the gym and be around the guys. I'll just let the chips fall where they may. There's nothing else to divulge. I just hope and pray that in the next couple weeks I can continue to improve in all areas and then we'll leave it up to a collective decision."

On Head Coach Ken Hitchcock's comments last week regarding Primeau:
"That's because he's taking the positive approach rather than the negative approach. I'd rather him say that I look like a 50-goal scorer than to say that I was retiring.

"There's a lot of information floating out there and there's a lot of fallacies and there's a lot of rumors. It's actually comical because nothing like that has ever come out of my mouth. I haven't even said to my wife what my intentions are. I'm waiting until camp. I don't want people to go through the emotional roller coaster. It's bad enough that I've got to deal with it. They have been good too, and that's part of what I've got to factor into my equation as well.

"When I get to camp, my timeframe rapidly increases, I believe. I have to go through with the team and management. Most people have been great in giving me that freedom to follow that protocol. As far as retirement and the discussion of retirement, that has to factor into my equation.

"My motivation at this point in time is just to get better and be productive. If I can do that, then [it's] to get better on the ice and be productive on the ice. It doesn't mean that I'm not visualizing flying and being a part of the group, it's just different. I avoid the conversation of retirement with everybody. My wife doesn't bring it up, my family doesn't bring it up, and we don't discuss it. It's frustrating to think that it could be the end, but I refuse to say at this point in time that I am retiring when I still have a window of…whatever. I'm not going to sell myself short. I'm going to give myself every opportunity to be ready and try and prolong my career."
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