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Ryan Callahan injury: forward cleared for contact, but will miss season opener

The Ranger captain is still recovering from surgery to repair a torn labrum

USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers got some good news about their captain on Thursday, but not quite as good as they'd like.

Ranger captain Ryan Callahan has apparently been cleared for contact. MSG analyst Joe Micheletti reported on-air Thursday night that New York coach Alain Vigneault had told the broadcast crew the information prior to the Rangers game against Vancouver. However, Micheletti also reported that when asked if this news meant that Callahan could play in the team's season opener, Vigneault quickly responded "No."

Callahan had offseason surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder. He underwent the surgery in late May, following the Rangers playoff elimination at the hands of the Boston Bruins. He was given a five-to-six month recovery time. Despite Vigneault repeatedly saying no, the belief in Rangers camp is that Callahan will try to find a way into the lineup on Oct. 3 in Phoenix when the Rangers open the season.

The 28-year-old Callahan is a fan favorite, named captain prior to the 2011-12 season. He had 31 points in 45 games last season, coming off a personal best 54 points in 76 games the season before. He's also a likely candidate for Team USA at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

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