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Rangers' Sauer hoping for Sunday or Monday return

by Dan Rosen / NHL.com
GOTHENBURG, Sweden -- Rangers defenseman Michael Sauer skated Friday afternoon for the first time since suffering a sprained right shoulder early in Monday's preseason game in Philadelphia. Sauer, who came to Europe with his arm in a sling, didn't face any contact, but did skating and shooting drills with assistant coach Jim Schoenfeld.

Sauer told NHL.com that his goal is to play in one of the Rangers' final two preseason games -- Sunday in Slovakia and Monday in Switzerland. He will not play Friday night here against the Frolunda Indians.

"The goal would be to play in a couple of days if the shoulder starts feeling really well, but it's a process," said Sauer, who had 15 points in 76 games in 2010-11, his first full season in the NHL. "It takes time. It's nothing too serious, just one of those time things."

Michael Sauer
Defense - NYR
GOALS: 3 | ASST: 12 | PTS: 15
SOG: 54 | +/-: 20
Sauer was injured when he hit the end boards awkwardly after getting checked by Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo in the first period Monday. At the time, Rangers coach John Tortorella said Sauer would be out at least seven days.

"It's been a day-to-day thing," Sauer said. "I have to talk to the trainer and see where he's at, what he wants me to do, and obviously (Tortorella) is that way, too. We'll gauge how I'm feeling on the ice, but obviously I want to get back to feeling more strength so I can get back in practice and participate with the team, get some contact and see how (my shoulder) handles that."

Sauer's lungs and legs felt the brunt of the pain Friday.

"A couple of days off makes the lungs a little tired, but that's expected," he said. "As practice went on, I felt better with my legs. The shoulder is still sore, but it was good to get out there and test it out to see where I'm at by using what I can use at the moment."

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl
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