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Islanders notebook: John Tavares talks thumb surgery, Doug Weight

Islanders center John Tavares looks on against the

Islanders center John Tavares looks on against the Avalanche in the first period of a game at Barclays Center on Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

A few more items from Newsday’s conversation with John Tavares on Wednesday, plus a note about Islanders 2012 draft pick Doyle Somerby:

— Tavares gave some detail on the thumb surgery he had in April.

“It’s something I’ve had for a few years,” Tavares said. “I kind of did it, aggravated it the first time training a few years ago. It was never really that bad but something I always kept an eye on. Then I hurt it in Boston in January, I fell on it awkwardly late in the game and because of the previous time that I’d hurt it, it was a little bit weak and I tore a ligament in my thumb. I had to wear a brace the rest of the season. For only 2-3 weeks it was really annoying and then, with some good treatment and staying on top of it, I was able to do everything I could normally do on the ice. It didn’t hinder me in any way.

“After the season it was determining whether the surgery was necessary or whether it would heal on its own. I felt I didn’t want this reoccurring and the recovery time was only six weeks, so it was the right thing to do once the season ended.”

Tavares had 12 goals and 22 assists in the 35 games after he tore his thumb ligament last season. He said that the thumb and his partially torn hamstring are fully healed and he’s been on schedule for all his offseason work.

— Tavares had this to say about Weight and the nearly new coaching staff:

“Dougie’s a thinker. He always wants to do things the right way, I don’t think he’s ever approached anything in life any differently. He’s done a lot of work on the best way to build a coaching staff and get the support he needs to make us better players. He talked to me a lot about having people around that he knew from his playing days or a guy like Scott Gomez, who is fresh out of the league and understands today’s game really well. It’s exciting and a great approach.”

Tavares said he and Weight have talked often this offseason about Weight’s planned approach to training camp and the season, in case you were wondering whether the captain is still as invested as he was before this contract extension uncertainty came about.

— Somerby was the Isles’ fifth-round pick in 2012 and chose to go back to Boston University last year so he could be the team’s captain. Once a college draftee gets to that senior season, as evidenced by some recent examples like Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey, the temptation to get to Aug. 16 and become an unrestricted free agent is awfully great.

“There’s still mutual interest with the Islanders but Doyle has a right to see what’s out there,” Brett Peterson, Somerby’s agent, said. “He definitely has a comfort level with the Isles.”

Peterson declined to detail the teams that have called to express interest in the 6-foot-5 defenseman.

New York Sports