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Johnsson Progressing, Kapanen Sits Out Against Tampa Bay

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers

Tampa Bay, FL – Flyers defenseman Kim Johnsson, who has been out of the lineup with a concussion, is continuing to progress back at the team's practice facility in New Jersey while the team is away.

Athletic Trainer and Strength and Conditioning Coach Jim McCrossin updated Johnsson's condition before the game against Tampa Bay on Friday night.

"I spoke with Kim [Friday] and he is continuing to progress, so we'll get him on the ice next week," said McCrossin. "Otherwise, he sounded very positive. He is noticing improvement. He still has symptoms, but they are not lasting as long as they did and they are not as severe, which is great."

Johnsson will travel to Pittsburgh on Wednesday to visit with Dr. Mickey Collins, in order to "get another set of eyes on him," according to McCrossin. There is still no timetable on the defenseman's return.

"If he is able to go ahead and exercise and is able to push himself when he has no symptoms…we're not at that point yet," said McCrossin.

Kapanen Has Sore Right Shoulder

Flyers right wing Sami Kapanen missed Friday's game against Tampa Bay with a sore right shoulder, but could play Saturday in Atlanta.

"I think he fell yesterday at practice and tweaked it, so he's day-to-day," said Ken Hitchcock. "We're assuming he can play [Saturday]. He probably could play [Friday] but he's a little bit sore."

Hitchcock was able to insert Michal Handzus back into the lineup for Friday, but joked that he still does not have a complete team of healthy forwards.

"We got close, we got it into a practice [Thursday], so that's a step in the right direction," he said.

Flyers to Use Pink Sticks

All weekend, NHL stars will be using pink sticks in warm-ups that will later be auctioned off for breast cancer awareness. Several Flyers will take part in the cause including Peter Forsberg, Simon Gagne, Robert Esche, Donald Brashear, Freddy Meyer and Joni Pitkanen. They will use the sticks on Saturday in their game against the Atlanta Thrashers.

Mike Knuble will also be using a pink stick and credits the league for the idea.

"A couple years ago my Mom went through a little bout and a little scare, with chemotherapy and all that," said Knuble.

"It's not easy to start something up like this in the middle of the year, but guys are jumping on board and it's a great thing that they're doing."
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