COLE HARBOUR, Nova Scotia -- Chuck Kobasew, who fractured his left tibia on March 25, has not appeared in a preseason game and is considered day-to-day. Claude Julien put Kobasew in the same category as Zdeno Chara (shoulder) and Shane Hnidy (knee), who have also not played yet.
Chuck Kobasew hasn't been ready for preseason play. (Barry Chin/Globe Staff)
Kobasew first skated in August back home. He usually starts skating in June.
"This is the first time I've been on the ice since I got hurt," Kobasew said. "I skated during the summer, but it's not the same as competing like this. So I'm just working on it."
Kobasew has been skating without limitations during practice. He was on a line today with P.J. Axelsson and David Krejci. After practice, Kobasew stayed on the ice for some extra work with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides.
During one drill, Kobasew tied resistance bands around his waist, then took several explosive strides while Whitesides held on. Later, Kobasew planted on his left leg and absorbed checks from Whitesides. Kobasew said he still experiences some pain in the leg, but that such discomfort is normal.
"Chuck, Hnides, and Z are cautious things right now," Julien said. "They're all coming off injuries. You can rehab all you want in the summertime. But they haven't been at this level of competition much during the summer. We'll give them a chance to do some stuff before we get them in a game."
* Kobasew was curious to see how Mitch Fritz performed last night. Fritz and Kobasew are both from Osoyoos, British Columbia. Fritz, currently in the Islanders system, is two years older than Kobasew and a whole lot bigger, checking in at 6-foot-8, 258 pounds. "He's actually pretty skilled when we play during the summer," said Kobasew.