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Images: Juraj Slafkovsky is physically better and has started training again
Juraj Slafkovsky suffered a left knee injury in mid-January, ending his first NHL season.

Obviously, his debut in the show didn’t go as planned, as he was forced to play just 39 games in 2022-2023. He lost months of development time, and that, too, is unfortunate.

But all indications are that the first overall pick in the last draft is in much better shape right now. We knew he’d started skating again, since towards the end of the season (April 10, to be precise), he indicated he was going to jump on the ice for the first time since hurting himself in January…

And now, some six weeks later, he really seems to be back in form. At least, that’s how I understand it when I see images of him training in his native Slovakia, wearing his full kit.

He’s obviously making progress, and that’s the good news.

Cole Caufield, who also saw his season cut short by injury, is getting better physically.

The CH small forward posted a photo of himself on Instagram in which he can be seen playing tennis, which leads us to believe that he’s progressing well, just like Slafkovsky.

We all agree that a big season awaits the Slovak in 2023-2024. He’ll need to avoid falling victim to the sophomore jinx, and he’ll be well surrounded to do just that.

Personally, I can’t wait to see how he responds after missing so many months of activity. Yes, it’s all very well to train on the ice during the summer, and it’s all very well to follow intense training sessions.

But there’s not much of that that can compare to a match situation. It’s completely different.

I’m also wondering what role he’ll be given at the start of the season. Will Martin St-Louis and the coaching staff want to put him on an offensive trio, right from the start of training camp, to see how he progresses?

One thing’s for sure: the coach is going to do everything in his power to ensure his success on the ice… And I wouldn’t be too surprised to see St-Louis put him in the right conditions to help him get back to his game shape fairly quickly.

In gusto

– Ah, yes. Clever, my Jamie!

– I still don’t understand that one.

– Good. Bad news for the American.

I like that, seeing things the same way.

– Bravo!

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