Pronger skates, shoots as recovery continues


Chris Pronger was laughing and joking around with reporters after a 25-minute skate on the ice.

The only gear he was wearing at SkateZone on Friday morning was an iPod.

As for his music

I was doing a couple little dances out there, Pronger said. There was no Lady Gaga at that particular moment when you saw me out there.

The last time Mr. Warmth was on the ice in a meaningful situation was last April 30Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Eastern Conference semifinals against Boston.

Pronger didnt attempt anything fancy. A lot of end-to-end strides. Some wicked slap shots.

Thats important because, while his recovery from back surgery on May 12 has gone very well, Pronger still had lingering problems this summer from right handwrist surgery last March.

He said the wrist felt good even when shooting. Pronger shot a number of hard snap wrist shots, as well as lap shotssome directed at reporters, standing along the glass.

I was shooting pretty good I think? he said. Was it pretty loud against the glass there? Yeah, yeah.

Pronger estimated he was a couple weeks away from rejoining full team workouts. He will miss the start of Flyers training camp on Sept. 17 and part of camp itself, all of which was expected.

Whether Pronger is ready for the season opener Oct. 6 against the Cup champion Bruins is the larger issue. Right now, there is no timetable.

I felt pretty goodhow did I look? A little suspect going left to right or right to left? Pronger kidded. Its been a while ... Well see how I feel tomorrow.

Having not skated or done anything on the ice in 4months, you have to take it slowly and see how you feel, day-by-day. Usually, the first time on the ice you feel pretty good and then its day 2-3-4-5 that youre a little suspect.

The next step is full gear and then raising the tempo of his skating and shooting.

Skating is a completely different motion because you are using muscles you dont normally use, Pronger replied when asked about doing something other than his normal off-ice rehab routine.

You cant simulate it. You have to go out and do it. At the end of the day, in order to get into game shape you got to skate.

Pronger began lifting weights last month. His two areas of concern are upper body strength and core strength which affects his back and skating.

We havent really tested that but I feel pretty good, Pronger said. Ive got probably a couple more weeks of strength training to try and get back to where I should be to start practicing with the team and things like that. Were getting there.

On Monday, rookie camp opens with first-year players and prospects on the ice for the first time.

E-mail Tim Panaccio at

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