Red Wings' Zetterberg relieved that back issues are behind him
Detroit Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg was limited to 45 regular-season games in 2013-14 due to a recurring back issue that required surgery in February after flaring up during the Sochi Olympics.
The club's captain was back in Detroit Thursday for an informal skate, declaring his back fully healed.
Zetterberg told Ansar Khan of MLive he'll no longer be inhibited by the injury.
I feel good. I can do everything on the ice and in the weight room. I had a really good summer, workout-wise, so I look forward to seeing what results that will give me. It's nice to come in and feel good and not think about (his back) and just go out and play hockey. I think they took away all of the loose pieces that they could in that area, so that's healed. I have no issues with it now so it shouldn't be a problem.
The 33-year-old scored 16 goals and added 32 assists last season, good for a 1.06 point-per-game average. Zetterberg was able to return to the lineup for Detroit's final two playoff games, recording a goal, an assist and five shots.
For his career, Zetterberg is averaging 0.95 points per game, and should have no problem matching that now that he's back to full health. Even more importantly, he's hoping he can help the team achieve a greater level of success than a first-round playoff exit.
"If you look at last year, there weren't a lot of games where we had a full lineup," he said. "Hopefully, if we have that this year we will see improvement."