Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lecavalier's shoulder might not be healed until training camp

TAMPA — Vinny Lecavalier said he slept five straight hours one night this week on his living room recliner, an ice pack melting on his surgically repaired right shoulder.

Not exactly what good night sleeps are made of. But compared with the fitful, painful lie-downs the Lightning center has endured since an April 15 arthroscopic procedure to repair a torn glinoid labrum, it was like heaven.

"I've had other surgeries," Lecavalier said, "but this one has been pretty tough with the pain and not being able to sleep."

And that it could take longer than expected to fully heal.

Lecavalier said his understanding is it could be five or six months until he is 100 percent, as the team said he will be.

Tampa Bay's estimate was for a 12- to 15-week "recovery process." But Lecavalier said that is when he can work out without restrictions. He said it could be five to six months until he is cleared for full contact.

"And that puts us into September," he said.

And that starts bumping into training camp.

The Lightning declined to better define the timetable.

"We remain confident that Vinny will be ready to join us at the beginning of the 2008-09 season," general manager Jay Feaster said in a statement.

"We are not going to discuss specific weeks or months or other benchmarks or milestones of the rehabilitation or when he may begin participating in certain activities."

For now, Lecavalier, 28, who last season became the first Tampa Bay player to twice score 40 goals, measures progress in baby steps.

He said he was able for the first time Thursday to drive himself to the St. Pete Times Forum for a multihour rehab session with assistant trainer Jason Serbus.

He said he finally can raise his arm 90 degrees forward and sideways, though reaching back is difficult. He uses a golf club to help raise the arm, holding the shaft in his left hand and pushing the head of the club into his right.

"It feels terrible right now," Lecavalier said. "But with Serbs here helping me out and telling me it's going to get back to 100 percent, I'm excited about that."

As for arthroscopic surgery on his painful right wrist scheduled for April 4 but postponed when his shoulder was hurt on a hit by the Capitals' Matt Cooke the day before, Lecavalier said it can wait.

"I played all year with it, and it didn't get worse," he said. "Going through all this with the shoulder, I just want to get this right."

No matter how long it takes.

Damian Cristodero can be reached at

Lecavalier's shoulder might not be healed until training camp 05/02/08 [Last modified: Sunday, May 4, 2008 12:25pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. NFL Week 3: What we learned


    Take the knee … well, not NOW

     1. Photo of Roger Mooney for Times Sports.
  2. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Sunday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    RHP Chris Archer's primary problem Sunday, as in much of September, was a lack of slider command. When he can't throw it where he wants, and doesn't have the confidence in the changeup to throw it often, he can't win with just his fastball.

  3. Somehow, Rays' Chris Archer remains just shy of being an ace

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — Chris Archer had another bad game Sunday.

    Chris Archer is sputtering to the finish line, his rough start on Sunday his fourth in his past five in which he hasn’t gotten past four innings.
  4. Bradenton high school senior Chasten Whitfield inspires young anglers


    MADEIRA BEACH — The kids lined up single file, snow cones in hand, a procession of sweaty, excited grade schoolers watching Chasten Whitfield throw a cast net.

    Whitfield, a senior at Bradenton Manatee, demonstrates how to throw a cast net at the FishKids tournament in Madeira Beach. She also taught knot tying.
  5. Wreck helps Kyle Busch take control of Monster Cup's ISM 300

    Auto racing

    LOUDON, N.H. — Kyle Busch saw little but billowing white smoke that engulfed the track and blinded enough drivers that it caused a tremendous wreck that notably altered the race running order.

    Kyle Busch celebrates with a burnout after his third victory of the season that earns a berth in the second round of NASCAR’s playoffs. He also has some fun with Loudon the Lobster.