NEWS

Martin at least one week away from return

Wednesday, 03.10.2010 / 12:53 PM ET / News
By Eric Marin
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Martin at least one week away from return
Martin's injury continues to improve.
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Paul Martin took part in Wednesday’s optional morning skate and said he’s still at least a week away from practicing with the team. Seven other Devils skated as the club was set to host the Rangers at 7 p.m.

“Today was the first day of actually doing some battle drills and being with the guys,” said Martin, who until Wednesday had been skating on his own. “It felt good to be in there doing that; I need to start doing that. It feels like I haven’t done that in five months, which is the case. But it was good. It’s starting to feel better. It’s still weak, it needs to get stronger, but I see progress. It’s not one of those things where each day it gets a lot better. It has some good days and some bad days, but over all, it’s ultimately getting better.”

Martin has been out since Oct. 24 with a non-displaced left forearm fracture and had minor surgery on the arm in late December. The injury occurred nine games into a regular season that now has just 18 remaining.

Martin says the grip strength in his left arm is about 75 percent of his right arm, and that he’ll need to get it to 80-85 percent before returning to the lineup.

“I’m still not taking any slapshots or anything where I’m leaning my whole body into it,” he said. “I still have to get some motion back in the wrist, then the strength will come after that. Hopefully, I’ll be able to take some heavy shots or really lean into them, but right now, I don’t have full power on my shots.”

As he’s gotten healthier, Martin has periodically checked the schedule to target a comeback date. But as those dates have passed, they’ve seemed, in retrospect, like wishful thinking.

“The sad part is, I was doing it two months ago because you always try to set a goal,” he said. “Unfortunately, it keeps getting pushed back. At the time, they’re realistic but then, as it gets closer, you realize it’s not ready yet. Right now, if I had to say how long, I’d say, for sure, another week from this weekend.”

Martin hopes for a clean bill of health shortly after he’s ready to take slapshots.

“If it’s strong enough to be taking the full shots and I don’t have any issues with it, I think I’ll be able to play right away, I would hope,” he said. “I imagine a couple of practices, but that’ll be up to the coaches and trainers. Right now, I’m just trying to get everything else ready so that this is the only thing that’s limiting me.”

If there’s one upside in all this, it’s that as a left-handed shooter, Martin relies more on his right hand for pokechecking and stickhandling. He said it’s an advantage to have his healthy arm/hand at the top of the stick while his left is positioned at the bottom.

“It’s tough because you need the bottom hand a lot for shooting, but I never could shoot that hard anyway,” Martin joked. “I’ll just have to get it back to as good as I can until I can start playing.”
 

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
A. Henrique 75 16 27 -6 43
M. Cammalleri 68 27 15 2 42
P. Elias 69 13 21 -20 34
S. Gomez 58 7 27 -10 34
S. Bernier 67 16 16 2 32
T. Zajac 74 11 14 -3 25
A. Larsson 64 3 21 2 24
A. Greene 82 3 19 1 22
E. Gelinas 61 6 13 -2 19
M. Ryder 47 6 13 -1 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 26 31 9 .925 2.26
K. Kinkaid 6 5 4 .915 2.59