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Joe Thornton in Sharks lineup for Game 3

Center missed first two games of series against Oilers with knee injury

by Tim Campbell @TimNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

SAN JOSE -- San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton made his 2017 Stanley Cup Playoff debut in Game 3 of the Western Conference First Round series against the Edmonton Oilers at SAP Center on Sunday.

Thornton missed the final three games of the regular season and Games 1 and 2 in Edmonton because of a left-knee injury. He has been skating since the series began and has said on a daily basis that his knee was feeling a bit better.

Thornton, 37, returned to his usual game-day routine Sunday, skating for about 10 minutes prior to his teammates at the optional morning skate.

"After yesterday with the day off, I wanted to do something light and just kind of feel a little bit fresher today," he said afterward. "So hopefully it responds good and I'll be able to play tonight."

Thornton was the first player onto the ice behind Sharks starting goalie Martin Jones for warmups.

The best-of-7 series is tied 1-1.

Game 3 is the 157th NHL playoff game of Thornton's career.

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