Kyle Okposo looks set to take the ice again in 2017-18, and he penned an open letter to show how he feels. In the open letter, Okposo talks about his concussion, regaining the desire to play, overcoming his obstacles, and being ready to come back.
“I know I can play and not worry about hitting my head, which is a major hurdle for someone who’s dealt with this. If I didn’t feel 100 percent right now, that probably wouldn’t be the case.”
Kyle Okposo pens open letter to fans, “I’m healthy and feel great!”
Okposo spoke about the process of coming back, and how he came to the conclusion he was ready. After spending time with family after the concussion, he wasn’t sure if he would want to return to professional hockey.
“I began the process last week, playing in a summer league with other NHL players in Minnesota. It was amazing to drive in and see the parking lot packed with people who were excited to watch hockey in July. It’s a lot like Buffalo in that way.
The first game itself was not good. We got whacked, 10-3. But I’ve come a long way since March and April, so it was nice to just play hockey again. I’m healthy and feel great!
I’ve already spoken with Phil Housley and Jason Botterill about the future. Phil coached me before with Team USA, so we have some history. (He’s also a Minnesota guy, which ups him a few notches in my book.) He had a special team in Nashville last year and his playing resume speaks for itself, so I think I speak for my teammates when I say that we can’t wait to get started with him as our head coach.
The most important trait I see in Jason is that he comes from a winning culture. Pittsburgh has two Stanley Cups in the last two years and three in the last eight, and I know that he was a big part of that. I think it’s going to be instrumental to our success for us to have someone at the helm who has a winning pedigree and knows what it takes to win.”
Okposo looks ready mentally and with his clearance to play again is ready to go and wants to win. In his single season with the Buffalo Sabres Okposo played in 65 games, scoring 19 goals and adding 26 points to his tally.
Okposo was selected with the seventh overall pick of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. Since then he has played in 594 games, scoring 158 goals and adding 256 assists. His best season in the NHL came in 2013-14 with the New York Islanders, scoring 27 goals and adding 42 assists in just 71 games.