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Laperriere not close to returning

by Dave Lozo
LOS ANGELES -- Ian Laperriere, who was at Staples Center on Saturday night as part of a pregame ceremony to honor Mattias Norstrom, said he's still not feeling close to 100 percent after experiencing post-concussion symptoms in training camp with the Philadelphia Flyers.

"I'm all right. Not that great if I'm standing right here in front of you," Laperriere said. "It's part of the injury I have and I have to deal with it."

Laperriere suffered a concussion when he blocked a shot with his face during the Flyers' first-round playoff series with the New Jersey Devils. He was said to be out indefinitely, but told team doctors he was OK to play and returned for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Montreal Canadiens.

Now, Laperriere said he hasn't gotten to the point where he said he's ready to even attempt a comeback.

"Right now, I just want to feel better," said Laperriere, who is expected to sit out the entire 2010-11 season. "I just want to feel like myself again for my family. If I was 22 I'd probably have a different speech right now, but if this is it, I played a long time. I had a great time but we'll see. I go day by day."

Laperriere said he's able to work out, but Norstrom's ceremony was the first time he had been on the ice since training camp. Laperriere was asked how close he feels to being himself again, and the response wasn't that encouraging.

"Not that close," he said. "The lights and everything, that's what really pains me quite a bit. When you're out there, that's all there is -- lights and movement. Regular stuff, I'm fine with my kids and everything. One of my biggest fears is not if, but when I'm going to get hit again. The way I play, it's a matter of time. I got to be smart about that.

"Last year was different, I got caught in the moment. I lied to myself to be part of that Stanley Cup run. I was lucky enough to not get hit again, but this year I need to be smarter."

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo
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