Edmonton Oilers forward Taylor Hall is back on the ice after difficult surgery that left him with a three-inch scar on his left shoulder.
In an interview with the Edmonton Sun, Hall described the procedure to fix the injury that contributed to his 2011-12 season ending prematurely.
"The surgery was tough. They didn’t just do it arthroscopically, they cut me open and moved the bone around," he told the newspaper in a story published Wednesday. "I have a three-inch scar on my shoulder. …
Left Wing - EDM
GOALS: 27 | ASST: 26 | PTS: 53
SOG: 207 | +/-: -3
"But now it feels like I have a brand-new shoulder. It’s exciting for me because I haven’t really had that in the last two years."
Hall played one shift on March 16, then missed the rest of the season -- the second time he failed to play a full 82-game schedule. He also has suffered a high ankle sprain, a lacerated forehead and a concussion. He said he put off the surgery to repair his separated left shoulder because he wanted to continue playing despite the fact he was limited on the ice.
"There were games last year where it would get hurt in the first period and for the rest of the game I wouldn’t really be able to do much because I’d be in pain," the 20-year-old said. "Not enough pain to take me out of the game, but enough to kind of hamper me a little bit. … Sometimes when I went into the boards I would have to lose the battle because I knew if I put my shoulder a certain way it would kind of pop out. Now I won’t have that."
Hall is working out without contact at his home in Kingston, Ont., the report said.
"It’s held up fine, so I’m pretty excited about that," Hall said. "It’s time to start being a hockey player again."
The No. 1 pick in the 2010 NHL Draft has 95 points in 126 games during his two shortened seasons. He's eager to prove what he can do while making it through a full 82-game season.
"It’s been a couple of tumultuous seasons, but mentally I have to put it behind me and start out fresh," he said. "I know that I’m a good enough hockey player to put a full season together, I just need to do it."