Jack Capuano said MacDonald, who had arthroscopic hip surgery in March, should be good to go in either of the remaining two preseason games -- Friday against the Devils in Newark or Saturday against the Bruins in Bridgeport.
"I'm not so worried about my hip, it's more the timing of everything, getting that back," MacDonald said after practice at IceWorks on Thursday. "If I didn't have a preseason game I wouldn't be overly concerned, because we're all working towards getting ready for Oct. 8. But if I can get in one, that will only help."
Capuano didn't tip his hand about lineups for Friday or Saturday, but he reiterated that the veteran goaltenders (DiPietro, Nabokov, Montoya) would get the bulk of the work.
Rhett Rakhshani (left knee) and Milan Jurcina (groin) did not skate. Capuano said Rakhshani's injury could be serious; Jurcina's less so, but it's still a setback for the veteran defenseman.
"It's disappointing in a way, but he'll just have to battle through this," Capuano said.
Jurcina's injury makes it more likely that Steve Staios will sign a contract. Expect to see Staios, who has played all three games so far, play one, if not both of the remaining games, possibly alongside Mark Streit -- if the coaching staff prefers the MacDonald-Travis Hamonic pairing from last season, Staios' stay-at-home style could mesh well with Streit.
And Staios has been healthy so far.
There will also be competition for one of the depth forward spots. Tim Wallace and Trevor Frischmon went on waivers yesterday, leaving tryout Jay Pandolfo still vying for a fourth-line wing spot against Matt Martin.
Brian Rolston (groin) skated before his teammates on Thursday. Capuano said the veteran would not likely play in either of the remaining preseason games.
Marty Reasoner (knee) came through his first game on Tuesday in good shape and said he's physically ready to play one of the games coming up.