The Jeff Skinner watch continues.
Canes coach Kirk Muller said after today's practice that Skinner, out the last 15 games with a concussion, could return for tomorrow's game against the Boston Bruins. Then again, it could be Sunday against the Washington Capitals or Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
But Muller isn't ruling out Skinner playing against the Bruins.
"We gave him a good physical push today at the end of practice to get him in some more battles," Muller said. "If everybody feels he's ready to go we'll put him in.
"But I'm not going to put him in unless I have that gut feeling and everyone says he's ready to go. When that time is, if it's tomorrow, great. If not, we'll keep him out until we feel it's the right time."
Skinner said he "real close" to playing and noted he's "kind of counting down the hours to it."
"But I don't know," he said. "There's so many gray areas, so many people involved. The training staff, the doctors, the coaches, the management. It's really a joint sort of decision, and we have to come together and decide it so that everyone is comfortable with the situation and the decision that's made."
Defensemen Jaroslav Spacek and Bryan Allen missed practice today. Spacek took a puck in the face against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday and Allen suffered a broken nose against the Buffalo Sabres a week ago.
Muller said both were "getting some repairs" today but should play against Boston barring any complications. Eric Staal missed practice for a "maintenance day."