The Edmonton Oilers rookie centre is ahead of schedule in his recovery from a broken left collarbone, general manager Peter Chiarelli told Sportsnet on Thursday.
It's believed McDavid, who was expected to be out months after he fell awkwardly and slid into the end boards with two Philadelphia defencemen in a Nov. 3 game, could return to game action shortly after his 19th birthday on Jan. 13.
McDavid, who had surgery to install a plate and screws, is said to have already resumed workouts in a pool and lifted weights.
The 18-year-old had ditched his sling less than two weeks after the injury occurred and two weeks ago was saying he was feeling "really good."
McDavid's only notable injury in three junior seasons with the Ontario Hockey League's Erie Otters was a fractured bone in his right hand in a fight with Bryson Cianfrone of the Mississauga Steelheads last season. He did not require surgery but was out for five weeks, returning to play in the world junior championship and helping Canada to a gold medal in Toronto.
McDavid is currently at his parents' home in nearby Newmarket, Ont., and is expected to rejoin the Oilers when they visit Toronto for a Nov. 30 game and travel back to Edmonton.
He was named NHL rookie of the month for October and has five goals and 12 points in 13 games, having fit in well on a line with Nail Yakupov and Benoit Pouliot.
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