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Martin St. Louis returns to practice for Lightning

Tuesday, 12.20.2011 / 8:24 PM / News

NHL.com

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Martin St. Louis returns to practice for Lightning
The Tampa Bay Lightning got some good news Tuesday when forward Martin St. Louis returned to practice -- less than two weeks after being hit near the left eye by a puck.
The Tampa Bay Lightning got some good news Tuesday when forward Martin St. Louis returned to practice -- less than two weeks after being hit near the left eye by a puck.

St. Louis traveled to San Jose with the team Tuesday morning and later joined his teammates on the ice at HP Pavilion. He wore a full cage to protect his face during drills.

It has not been decided whether he will be able to play against San Jose on Wednesday or against the Colorado Avalanche in Denver on Friday.

St. Louis was injured during a morning skate on Dec. 8 at Madison Square Garden in New York when teammate Dominic Moore accidently fired a backhand that went wide of the net and struck St. Louis. He left the ice bleeding from the area around his eye -- forcing him to miss what would have been his 500th consecutive regular season-game.

St. Louis was hospitalized with a broken nose and a hairline fracture of his orbital bone. His eye was swollen shut and a blood clot developed, forcing him to abstain from physical activity until the clot dissipated.

He was cleared for activity on Friday but reported slight blurriness in his left eye and remained in Tampa when the Lightning flew to Columbus, Ohio, for Saturday's game against the Blue Jackets, a 3-2 victory.

St. Louis, 36, has nine goals and 22 points in 27 games this season. In 881 career games, he has 307 goals and 800 points. He was a Second-Team All-Star in 2010-11 and won both the Art Ross and Hart Trophies in 2003-04 while helping to lead the Lightning to the Stanley Cup.
Quote of the Day

This team has been a real treat to say you've been the head coach of them. I'm extremely proud of this group ... after the disappointment of (the Game 6 loss) is digested, it's always a lot easier as a coach when your team has emptied its tank, and that team emptied its tank for me for three months.

— Senators coach Dave Cameron after getting eliminated in the first round by the Canadiens