Albeit in a non-contacrt jersey, Ryane Clowe skated and shot for the first time since he was drilled by Bobby Sanguinetti against Carolina in the next to last game of the year.
He said he would not rule out playing in Game 2 tomorrow, that his conditioning was okay, but needed to check with doctors to determine whether he could take hits. He would not discuss his undisclosed injury.
Derek Dorsett (broken clavicle) also skated for the first time in a regular jersey, a sign that he is closer, although there was very little contact in a brief, loose practice that included, breakaways, 2 on 0s and a game of shinny with two nets in the offensive zone.
Brian Boyle (knee) also skated, along with Marc Staal. Boyle was in the trainers room afterward and was not immediately available. Staal walked in and out of the room very quickly as the team was called into a video session.
Bottom line: Rangers, as we indicated yesterday, are getting healthier, slowly but surely.
If one of the forwards comes back, my guess is that Kris Newbury comes out of the lineup for Game 2.
Here's some quotes from Clowe: "Felt pretty good. Obviously it's the first time I've skated since the Carolina game. It was good to get out there.'
'Im testing something in my body. But I'm not going to obviously say what it is. '
'I guess it's just a progression here now. I'm not going to rule out tomorrow. It's the time of the year in hockey I look forward to the most. It was hard to watch last night, but I'll discuss it with the trainers and the proper people today and let them know how I felt out there so . . . We'll see.'
'I feel like at this time of year, I could jump in anytime. Just because I've played a lot of hockey up to this point. I just feel like you can always run on . . . It's kind of like my first game in New York. Didn't really have any sleep, but you run on adrenaline to get you back into it. So I don't think conditioning is that big a factor.'
Is he okay to take a hit?
"That's something that we've got to discuss because obviously, I'm not going to go out there and play if I can't take a hit this time of year. So if I'm playing, I can take a hit."