The Detroit Free Press and MLive.com reported Monday that Howard will be activated from IR and be available to play Tuesday against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Howard left a game Jan. 20 against the St. Louis Blues in the second period with pain in his knee; he had missed nearly three weeks in December with a knee injury. This time Howard said he only expected to miss about a week after having fluid drained from the knee, and he previously had targeted a return for Tuesday against the Flyers.
In 29 games the 29-year-old is 9-12-8 with a 2.64 goals-against average and .916 save percentage.
I have been blessed to play for 16 years in the NHL; it has been an amazing ride. I would like to thank the Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Rangers organizations and owners for providing me the opportunity to play the sport I love for so many years. I could have never played for so long or accomplished all that I have without the unwavering love and support from my wife, Heather, our three sons, Ryan, Lucas, and Mason, and my parents.
— Martin St. Louis after announcing his retirement from the NHL on Thursday