KUHNHACKL PRACTICES FOR FIRST TIME SINCE OCT. 25:
Tom Kuhnhackl skated with the team in a full-participation jersey at practice on Friday morning. Kuhnhackl has been sidelined since Oct. 25 after sustaining a lower-body injury against Ottawa.
"It's really nice [to be back]," Kuhnhackl said. "It's been a really long time since I skated with the team. It's nice to be back out there with them. I feel pretty good. Hopefully, I'll feel better these next couple of skates."
Kuhnhackl hasn't traveled with the team since being placed on injured reserve retroactive to Oct. 25, but hopes to get cleared soon enough to join the team in action. Kuhnhackl did visit kids at Cohen Children's Medical Center on Nov. 19.
"It's been a long stretch where I've been away from the team," Kuhnhackl said. "I didn't get to travel with them. I felt left out left out a little bit. It's obviously pretty frustrating, but it's nice to be back with the team."
LEDDY SKATES WITH TEAM:
Nick Leddy missed the Isles game against Los Angeles on Wednesday evening as he was tending to a re-aggravated lower-body injury, but rejoined the Isles for a full-contact practice on Friday morning. Leddy resumed line rushes with on the left side of d-partner Johnny Boychuk and is expected to be available to play against Columbus tomorrow according to Head Coach Barry Trotz.
"I don't see any reason why Nick won't be [available]," Trotz said, "[Leddy] is a top player for us. Getting him back gets us in our lefty/righty position back."
Video: Isles Practice 11/29: Barry Trotz
ISLES KEEPING SHORT MEMORY AFTER ROAD TRIP:
The Isles franchise-best 17-game point streak was snapped during the California swing where the Isles picked up one point through three games and went 0-2-1. The Isles are keeping a short memory from the three-game skid and concentrating their focus towards their next opponent.
"We had some moments, but we've got to put together a full game," Anders Lee said. "That was a big takeaway for us; it wasn't consistent throughout each night and was a little too sporadic. I think coming back home, getting to have a day yesterday with family and friends. We get back together, regroup and get back to how we were when we were doing really well. It was a couple of tough games on a road trip in a couple of tough buildings. We've got to get back on track."
The Isles lost 2-1 in overtime to San Jose on Saturday, were shutout for the first time of the season against Anaheim on Monday and relinquished four unanswered goals, including an empty net goal against the Los Angeles on Wednesday. The Isles pride themselves on their details and not being complacent, but the trip was a sobering reminder of the parity across the NHL.
"We got away from our game a little bit," Trotz said. "We weren't consistent enough. We didn't really deserve a better fate. I thought from our standpoint, we weren't consistent in a lot of areas of our game, but our effort was better in that last one."
The Isles take on division foe Columbus on Saturday at the Barclays Center. The Blue Jackets will be coming off of their first leg of a back-to-back as they face Pittsburgh on Friday night in Columbus. The Isles defeated the Blue Jackets 3-2 in overtime on Oct. 19 in the first meeting of the season.
"When you come back, you're flying cross-country, you've got to get back on the horse right away," Lee said. "It's always nice especially after a loss of a couple games on the road to get back in there and play again. You don't want to be sitting at home thinking about it. It'll be nice to get back out there on Saturday."