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Michalek takes another step forward in recovery

by Rob Brodie / Ottawa Senators
Senators forward Milan Michalek is recovering well from surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images).

Milan Michalek is confident he'll be good to go for the start of Ottawa Senators training camp.

The speedy forward, who required post-season surgery in April to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, said in an interview with that his recovery "is going well so far."

"(Tuesday) was actually the first day I was skating (since the surgery) and I felt pretty good," Michalek said from Montreal, where he trains in the off-season with several other National Hockey League players from his native Czech Republic. "It's coming back good and I feel strong.

"I should be ready for the start of the season."

Michalek first injured the knee in a March 18 game in Atlanta against the Thrashers. He returned for the final two games of the regular season but limped off the ice during the second period of the Senators' playoff opener against the Pittsburgh Penguins, his season over early.

For Michalek, it's meant an off-season that has been "a little different than all the other ones before" this one. But now he's focused on the task at hand, training within a group that includes fellow Czechs Martin Havlat of the Minnesota Wild (a former Senator), Michael Frolik of the Florida Panthers and, eventually, his brother Zbynek, a defenceman who signed with the Penguins as a free-agent in the off-season.

Michalek chuckles when he's asked about a potential duel with his brother in the post-season.

"It would be something special," said Michalek. "We had a lot of games against each other when I played in San Jose and he played in Phoenix. We played each other six or eight times a season, so we got used to it. The first time we played against each other, it felt a little weird, but ... I think it will be no problem now."

For more from Milan Michalek, check out our Friday Phone Call feature.

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