Sam Gagner told Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal that he intends to be back on the ice within five weeks of having his jaw broken and displaced by Zack Kassian of the Vancouver Canucks:
"I’m trying to push the doctors to see if I can be back in four or five weeks. The jaw was shattered and displaced, and when I sent the picture (via Twitter) that’s why it looked so bad, but my bite feels fine now."
When Gagner went down, I mentioned that I thought his during on the shelf would be a matter of maintaining weight and cardio, rather than recovery, stability, strength or pain management, like Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
Eric Morris, at Undisclosed Injury, wrote about Gagner's surgery:
3. Open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF): Open reduction involves surgery at the fracture site in order to place internal fixation to prevent movement of the fracture site. ORIF is often used in displaced fractures and when the patient wants a quicker recovery. The surgery involves placing placing titanium plates to repair the fracture. Incisions are either inside the mouth or outside the jaw on the skin. During the surgery, the surgeon cleans the fracture line and meticulously places plates and screws in optimal positions so as not to damage the teeth or the jaw's sensory nerves. The wound is then closed and the patient's jaw will usually be able to function either immediately or within a week. The surgery is complicated because the surgeon must be precise in the configuration of the titanium plates and screws.
Gagner will play with a full cage this season to protect the jaw, but as long as he gets his weight back and keeps his fitness levels up, five weeks is not out of the question, though it's just short of full healing time for the jaw.
Click through to read about Gagner's injury and recovery.