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Neal Skates In Dallas, Possibly Returning Vs. Stars

The wing broke his hand during the playoffs last spring with the Nashville Predators

by Dan Marrazza @GoldenKnights /

The question still has not official been answer. But perhaps we've seen a tip of coach Gerard Gallant's hand.

This morning, injured Golden Knights wing James Neal took the morning skate with his teammates at American Airlines Center. Neal's status has been in doubt since having offseason surgery on his right hand that he broke during Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals with the Nashville Predators last May.

Neal played 11 more games with the injury during the playoffs last year, but has been out of action in the preseason with the hopes of being 100 percent before returning.

This morning, Neal seemed to be close to 100 percent.

Video: James Neal skated with the team in Dallas


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"I mean, I just put the work in," Neal said. "I didn't really have a time line. I just wanted to see where I was at. Feel as good as I could. Feel good. Ready to go."

It must be noted that Neal remains on the team's non-roster injured list. He would have to be activated in order to play this evening.

So there are still a few moving parts here.

Except this morning, taking rushes on the right wing with Cody Eakin centering and David Perron on their left side, Neal looked ready to play. And for a team ins search of offense, a player that has scored 20 or more goals nine times - including seasons of more than 30 and 40 goals -

And for a player that some thought might miss the first month of the season, that health status might be the most important thing.

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