Gaborik cleared for contact, plans to return post-Olympics

Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Marian Gaborik (10) looks to shoot the puck with in the game against the New York Rangers at Nationwide Arena. New York Rangers win 4 to 2 over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Trevor Ruszkowski/Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Marian Gaborik, who suffered a broken collarbone Dec 21st, was cleared for contact yesterday after meeting with the Blue Jackets’ medical staff according to the Blue Jackets website.

Gaborik not only missed 23 games for the Blue Jackets since the injury, but he was also forced to miss the Olympics for his home country of Slovakia.

During today’s practice at the OhioHealth Ice Haus, Gaborik wore a ‘no-contact’ jersey while on the ice.

Following practice Gaborik said, "I’m going to work into practice and work into battles, and hopefully jump into games soon…Considering I couldn’t play, I had a chance to work on some things and rehab and strengthen stuff…it helped."

If all goes well, the Jackets should have Gaborik in the lineup on Feb. 27th against the New Jersey Devils. Gaborik said he would only take the ice if he were 100%.

"I should be (ready)…It’s a matter of feeling good and not being sore, and feeling strong and confident that I can go into battles at 100 percent and not be scared. I have time to work on those things in these upcoming eight days."

Getting a point-scorer like Gaborik back on the ice will essentially be the equivalent of a big-time trade for the Jackets.