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Plagued by bad back, Helm can finally ‘see a light’

Canucks Red Wings Hockey

Detroit Red Wings center Darren Helm celebrates his goal against the Vancouver Canucks in the first period of an NHL hockey game in Detroit, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)


Limited to just one game last season because of a mysterious back injury, Detroit forward Darren Helm was sounding cautiously optimistic Sunday at Red Wings development camp.

“I like the way things have went so far,” Helm told “Got one more skate tomorrow. Like I said before, it’s a process. I’m encouraged, for sure. I see this moving in the right direction, especially in the last few days.”

The 26-year-old speedster even took some light contact during one on-ice session.

“I didn’t have any (back) issues with that,” he said.

The Wings are obviously hoping Helm’s injury is a non-issue next season. He’s had setbacks before though, so there’s a reason the optimism is cautious.

“It’s been a tough year and a half,” he said.

“But I see a light.”