Carolina Hurricanes "Hopeful" Of Getting Injured Forward Back For Game 1

It's been nearly a month that the Carolina Hurricanes have been without an important part of their club, but it appears that Thursday should mark the return of forward Teuvo Teravainen. 

"Hopefully he's going to play..." said head coach Rod Brind'Amour. "We'll probably morning skate (Thursday) and make the determination after that... If he can go and he feels like he's ready, then he'll be in."

Teravainen has been skating with the team at PNC Arena for the past couple of days. It's been nearly a full month since he underwent surgery (April 20) to repair a broken bone in his left hand suffered in just the second game of their first-round series against the New York Islanders. 

Despite an "off" season for the 28-year-old, who was held to his lowest points per game percentage (0.54) in six seasons, he will be welcomed back with open arms as a crucial part of the Canes' offense and penalty-kill.

The 10-year veteran was originally given a 4-8 week timeline after going down early in the first round. But now here they are, ready to face off against the Florida Panthers in the Eastern Conference Final on Thursday.

“It’s kind of crazy,” Teravainen said. “I thought for sure I was done but doctors did a really good job... It’s awesome to see what the boys have done, a really good job playing really good hockey. It’s tough to watch the games from outside. You always want to be helping but they’ve done a really good job.”

Photo: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports