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Rangers' Yandle expected to return to practice

by Dan Rosen /

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- New York Rangers defenseman Keith Yandle missed practice for the second straight day Tuesday. Coach Alain Vigneault joked that Yandle had the sniffles after saying Monday he had overall body soreness.

Vigneault, though, said Yandle is expected to practice Wednesday in advance of the Rangers opening their Eastern Conference Second Round series against the Washington Capitals on Thursday at Madison Square Garden (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

Yandle has not practiced with the Rangers since prior to Game 3 against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round. He did not miss a game.

In addition, right wing Mats Zuccarello didn't practice Tuesday and remains out indefinitely because of an upper-body injury. Zuccarello was hit in the side of the head by Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh's shot late in the first period of Game 5 against the Penguins Friday.

The Rangers said there is no update on Zuccarello's condition.

The good news for New York is that defenseman Kevin Klein is progressing well and appears ready to play in Game 1. Klein hasn't played since March 11, when he broke his left arm blocking a slap shot from Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin.

Klein has said he is ready to go for Game 1.

"He looked good [Tuesday]," Vigneault said. "This was probably his second real team practice. I asked him how he felt on the ice, and he said he felt real good. We'll have another full team practice [Wednesday] and we'll see how he reacts to that."


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