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Seguin's status still unclear for Game 2

Stars forward feels 'great' but may not face Wild

by Steve Hunt / NHL.com correspondent

FRISCO, Texas -- Forward Tyler Seguin skated with the Dallas Stars for a fifth consecutive day Friday, but Stars coach Lindy Ruff wouldn't disclose whether Seguin will return for Game 2 of the Western Conference First Round against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday at American Airlines Center (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVAS2, FS-SW, FS-N, FS-WI).

Seguin, second on Dallas this season with 73 points (33 goals, 40 assists), missed the final 10 games of the regular season and the Stars' 4-0 win in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on Thursday after sustaining a cut Achilles on March 17 against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The cut required surgery.

"Well, I think that's a conversation him and I will have today [Friday], see where he's at after the workout," Ruff said. "If he's good, there's a good chance we'll put him in [on Saturday]."

Seguin was one of about 15 players to skate in an optional practice at the Stars headquarters.

Ruff said after morning skate on Thursday that Seguin would have played in Game 1 had it been Game 7, but he decided to hold Seguin out for at least a few more days so he could be closer to 100 percent once he did return.

Seguin feels he's ready.

"I've felt great all four days [of practice this week]," Seguin said. "I think it's been about getting that conditioning up a bit. Yesterday [Thursday] was a pretty good skate. Today just went out there, tried to feel good and I did, so I'm happy with that."

Seguin returned to practice on Monday, spending the first few days of the week wearing the red no-contact jersey. Ruff likes the progress he has seen from Seguin in practice over the past four days, but still wouldn't commit to him playing in Game 2.

"Well, for me there's no comparison [between how he looked Friday compared to Monday]," Ruff said. "I thought his first day out on the ice he was OK, and today [Friday] he just seems to be a lot more fluid, lot more jump, no hesitation. Those couple extra days are doing him well."

If Seguin returns for Game 2, he likely will skate on the right side of Dallas' top line alongside captain Jamie Benn on the left and center Cody Eakin.

And if Seguin is back in, that means Patrick Sharp, who filled that spot in Game 1, likely would drop back to his customary role on the second line, which could also mean young forward Valeri Nichushkin, who skated on the left side of the second line and had one shot in Game 1, could be a healthy scratch for Game 2.

"We've got a good problem," Ruff said. "There's teams that are pretty banged up that are trying to put people in where we've got ourselves healthy and we have to take somebody out, somebody that's playing well if we choose to put Tyler back in tomorrow."

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