CHICAGO - OCTOBER 13: Defenseman Brian Campbell #51 of the Chicago Blackhawks skates with the puck against the Nashville Predators during the third period at the United Center on October 13, 2008 in Chicago, Illinois. The Predators won 3-2 in a shootout. (Photo by Brian Kersey/Getty Images)
Ovechkin served a two-game suspension for the blow, but Campbell missed the final fourteen games of the regular season with a broken clavicle and rib.
At the time Blackhawks' head physician Michael Terry said Campbell would "likely avoid surgery and [enjoy] a full recovery."
"He should be ready to play in approximately seven to eight weeks," Terry said.
Exactly one month later Campbell was skating with his teammates at Johnny's Ice House. And while the team is only saying Campbell won't play in Game 1 Friday against Nashville, they won't rule out getting No. 51 back on the ice for the remainder of the first round.
"We didn't anticipate him playing for the first part of this series" Coach Quenneville said, "it wasn't on the radar."
Campbell admits he didn't think so either, but credits keeping up with his physical conditioning for being able to skate so soon.
"These are precious days right now if I don't do that I'm cheating myself, cheating my teammates."
Physical conditioning on the AeroDyne bike and skating help, but the emotional hump was a hurdle, too.
"It's been a challenge, when I got hurt they were on the road for almost three weeks in a row pretty much... I've been really positive about the injury not a whole lot I could do, you deal with it and move on mentally."
In the past month, Campbell admits to ingesting "everything legal" to speed up the healing process too.
"Just trying to work to get back as quick as I can... it's an important time of the year and nobody wants to sit around now."
Campbell says his legs, lungs and emotions are ready as soon as the doctors give him the green light.