Darren Helm: “I’ll be playing this year, I’m confident in that.”

DETROIT – Darren Helm has some kind of timetable to look at.

By the Wings placing Helm on long-term injured reserve, he’ll miss at least the first 10 games of the regular season.

“I don’t know when I’m going to be ready,” Helm said. “This gives me the opportunity to relax – not relax – but keep my mind off being ready now. It was kind of getting close to some pressure put on me, this takes some pressure off and get better at a little slower pace, might be better for my body.”

Helm participated in another full practice on Monday, centering a line with Drew Miller and Mikael Samuelsson.

“I need to string together a few of those before I feel like I, ready to play,” Helm said. “I’ve only played four periods in the last 18 months. This will give me some time to get a little bit of a training camp, I guess, give me an opportunity to get ready, get in some skates, do some stuff after.”

Players placed on short-term injured reserve (minimum seven days) provide no cap relief, but it does open up a roster spot, while long-term trips (minimum 10 games and 24 days) provide cap relief.

Helm’s recovery from a back injury was put on hold when he suffered a groin injury before training camp began.

“I’ll be playing this year, I’m confident in that,” Helm said. “Fairly small improvements throughout the whole process of injuries that have gathered up but I do feel it has gotten better than last week or so. Every day I keep doing a little more. Hopefully in a couple of weeks I’ll be 100 percent and ready to go.”

Helm, who played one game last season, has yet to be cleared for contact due to his back.

“I’m doing pretty much everything that everyone else is doing, maybe a little lighter weight,” Helm said. “That’s another thing I need to build up before I get playing. I don’t think a week or two will give me that opportunity to be at that level. Long-term will give me a chance to take some pressure off myself and go at my own pace and be ready.”

Helm hopes to travel with team and practice.

“It’s disappointing I won’t be able to play for three weeks, 10 games,” Helm said.


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