Artem Anisimov sits out against Devils but aching shoulder improves

Andy Greene #6 of the New Jersey Devils

Andy Greene #6 of the New Jersey Devils battles for the puck in the second period against Artem Anisimov #42 of the New York Rangers. (Feb. 27, 2012) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Artem Anisimov's left shoulder isn't as damaged as he first believed, and that's good news for the Russian forward.

"I couldn't move my arm," said Anisimov, who was checked into the boards by Penguins center Joe Vitale in the second period Thursday. He left the game grimacing, having played just 9:08. He sat out the 3-1 loss to Colorado on Saturday but participated in practice Monday, although his shooting and passing were restricted. Coach John Tortorella ruled him out of Monday night's game and called him "day-to-day."

"It feels OK. I'm so happy it's not more serious," said Anisimov, who has 14 goals and 19 assists and has been valuable on the penalty kill. "It's a tough injury. It's an injury that needs a full recovery. If I go on the ice and someone hits me in the shoulder, it could be much more serious."

Speaking of recovery, Michael Del Zotto brushed off questions about his aching right hip, using the old bromide that "everybody's banged up this time of year." True, but Del Zotto had some jump against Colorado after missing four games, and Tortorella said he was the best defenseman joining the rush. With Tim Erixon called up from the AHL, Del Zotto, a lefty, has been moved to the right side to play with Marc Staal.

"It [the hip] got there just by resting it and giving it some time," Del Zotto said. "With our style and the teams we're playing and the time of year, taking a constant beating would irritate it. These are all playoff-style games now. But it's good. It gets us ready for April."

Blue notes

No update on defenseman Steve Eminger, who was "banged up" against Pittsburgh and has not been available to the media . . . John Scott, Anton Stralman and Jeff Woywitka were healthy scratches.

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