PHILADELPHIA -- Claude Giroux wasn't a full participant in the first-day, on-ice activities at Philadelphia Flyers training camp, but he continued to make progress in his recovery from surgery to repair two torn tendons in his right index finger.
Giroux sustained the injury during a golf outing Aug. 15 and had surgery that day to repair the damage. The Flyers announced he would need five to six weeks of time to recover, but Thursday he was able to move the puck around more than he thought he would.
"It felt better than I thought," he said. "I wasn't too sure what I would be able to do. I was handling the puck and it was feeling good. I started passing it and it felt pretty good, and it still feels good."
Giroux said the passes weren't hard and only were to the goaltenders, but said any progress is good progress.
"I didn't really have a game plan," he said. "The game plan was every day when I wake up I know where I'll be and I'll go from there. … I don't want to force it too much for now. I haven't really shot the puck. I've been passing the puck to the goalies. I'll see how I feel [Friday]. I'm getting the right treatment. I'm icing my hand a lot. I'm hoping that [Friday] will be even better."
Flyers coach Peter Laviolette was happy to see Giroux in any form on the ice Thursday.
"I think when [the injury] first happened and you hear a date of maybe when he might be back on the ice and you're not sure what you can do to get him out there … he's the captain of this team," Laviolette said. "He's such an important part to so many different pieces we do on the ice. To see him out there for 30 minutes and he looked great. His skating was good, he was moving the puck fine. We just want to make sure he doesn't overdo it and he didn't. He did what he said he could do."
While Giroux likely won't play in the Flyers' first preseason game, Sept. 15 against the Toronto Maple Leafs in London, Ontario, he said he's hoping to get into at least one game before the season starts.
"Having a preseason game would be good to get the feeling of the game," he said. "I haven't played in a while. Even since my injury I haven't really been on the ice. Those flow drills that we were doing, that was good to get the game shape back on. I hope I'll be able to keep going as the pace is going right now."