The Philadelphia Flyers
will have forward Danny Briere
back in the lineup when they host the New York Islanders
Briere has missed the last six games with a concussion suffered in a Jan. 21 game against the New Jersey Devils
"I'm back and I'm in," Briere said following the Flyers' morning practice here at Wells Fargo Center. "Things have been going well the last two-and-a-half, three days. I feel ready. I feel like it's time. No symptoms the last few days. We'll give it a go. I know I'm excited."
Teammates were also excited, especially coming off their lost weekend -- a 6-4 home loss to the Devils on Saturday followed by a 5-2 defeat at the Rangers on Sunday.
"It's going to be awesome," Scott Hartnell
told NHL.com. "Anytime you come off an injury, especially a concussion, he might be a little bit nervous. But I know everyone on our dressing room … can't wait to see him back. He looks good in practice the last few days. I'm excited for him to get back in the lineup."
Briere has 17 goals and 13 assists in 43 games, and likely will center the second line. The hope is his presence can lighten the checking load on the team's top line of Claude Giroux
, Hartnell and Jaromir Jagr
"Anytime you get pieces back in the lineup it's good," said coach Peter Laviolette
. "I think it'll add to the offensive punch. … When you take a guy like Danny and put him back in the lineup, it makes it harder to defend. You can't just focus on one line or one player."
Briere said he's been symptom-free for about three days, and after meeting with doctors Monday, Briere said it came down to his decision.
"We had some talks (Monday)," said Briere. "And just basically what they told me was it's all up to me, depending on how I felt this morning waking up. It was good even after the contact I had yesterday. That was part of the reason why."
Briere, who had been averaging 18:15 of ice time per game prior to his injury, said he feels capable of playing his usual ice time.
"I'm 100 percent," he said. "It's all about the symptoms. It's not like a knee or a shoulder where you're finding your way back. Basically when you don't have symptoms you're ready to go. It's not something that's lingering or preventing you from doing a few things. Whenever you're symptom-free, you're 100 percent.
"The conditioning is not going to be an issue. I was working with Blair Betts
for a few days, and you know how hard he works. That wasn't relaxing. I think it's more the timing of the game -- making plays, read and react. That's something that we'll see. I don't know what to expect in that regard. Conditioning I should be OK."
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK