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Rangers' Stepan 'fortunate' to avoid surgery

by NHL.com Staff / NHL.com

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New York Rangers center Derek Stepan said he feels lucky he was able to avoid surgery on his broken left fibula sustained during conditioning drills Wednesday.

"A little sore, but they said it will be sore for the next couple of days and then start the healing process from there," Stepan told BlueshirtsUnited.com. "They just said that we were pretty fortunate and that it's going to take some time to heal, and hopefully I'll be back as soon as possible."

Stepan will miss the next 4-6 weeks because of the injury.

"You gotta try to look at the positive side of things," Stepan said. "We got time. We've got two weeks before the season starts. We were pretty fortunate; certain things that doesn't require surgery. Let the bone heal as fast as possible and get back on the ice as soon as possible."

Entering his fifth NHL season, Stepan has missed one game, Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final against the Montreal Canadiens with a broken jaw. His career-high 57 points last season was second on the Rangers behind Mats Zuccarello's 59.

"It's a bummer, but at the same time injuries happen in this sport and now it's most important for me to get ready and get myself ready to go for a time when hopefully we're off to a great start," Stepan said.

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