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Some early optimism from Detroit, Datsyuk on healing process

Boston Bruins v Detroit Red Wings - Game Four

DETROIT, MI - APRIL 24: Pavel Datsyuk #13 of the Detroit Red Wings moves the puck against the Boston Bruins of Game Four of the First Round of the 2014 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Joe Louis Arena on April 24, 2014 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

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There almost seems to be a “it could have been worse” feel to the Detroit Red Wings’ outlook regarding Pavel Datsyuk’s injury, at least based on this fairly optimistic update from

For one thing, the 36-year-old says he’s already feeling “much better” a few days after suffering that shoulder issue. One big positive - at least compared to other recent issues for the aging star - is that he’ll be able to skate (albeit by himself) while he heals up. Datsyuk also seemed happy about how well he can move all things considered.

Head coach Mike Babcock provided maybe the most appealing bit of optimism, which might hint that Datsyuk will be back closer to four than five weeks.

“Maybe it’s just me, but reading the report yesterday, 4-5 weeks, all I know is Pavel is a fast healer,” Babcock told “Let’s get him ready to go.

“What I like is Pavel is a really committed athlete and digs in hard. He’s training like a dog. He’ll be just fine.”

The Red Wings’ season kicks off in two weeks (Oct. 9), and depending upon how things shake out, he may only miss something like 10 regular season contests. Even with this setback, Datsyuk has a strong chance of at least having a healthier year than he suffered through in 2013-14, when he only appeared in 45 regular season contests.

(H/T to The Score.)

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins