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Golden Knights goalie Fleury could be cleared for practice this week

Out with concussion, has skated on his own for past two days; no target for game return

by Danny Webster / Correspondent

LAS VEGAS -- Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury could return to practice as early as Wednesday.

Fleury passed a formal neuropsychology test and could be cleared for full-contact practice this week for the first time since sustaining a concussion on Oct. 13.

"If there are no setbacks, then he'll be cleared to practice," Vegas general manager George McPhee said Sunday. "Which means, in our minds, his brain is 100 percent healed."

Fleury was diagnosed with a concussion during a 6-3 loss against the Detroit Red Wings on Oct. 13. He was placed on injured reserve Oct. 15 and the Golden Knights have started three different goalies (Malcolm Subban, Oscar Dansk and Maxime Lagace) in his absence.

Fleury skated on his own the past two days and has been placed in ready-to-play protocol. McPhee did not provide a timetable on when Fleury will return to the lineup, but it could be Dec. 14 when he faces his former team, the back-to-back Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins.

Video: VGK@DAL: Fleury dazzles with 45 saves in opener

"The fitness level is really high for him," McPhee said. "He's trained hard off the ice for several weeks."

Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant said Oct. 23 that when Fleury returns to practice, it could be approximately 4-5 days before he returns to game action. If he returns to practice Wednesday, that means Fleury could be in net Dec. 12 against the Carolina Hurricanes.

"It's a start," Gallant said Sunday. "Obviously, getting back on the ice is a big thing. We'll see what happens over the next little while, but good for him. I'm sure he's pretty excited."

Fleury is 3-1-0 on the season with a 2.48 goals-against average and .925 save percentage. In his absence, the Golden Knights have gone 12-8-1 entering play Sunday.

"We've used our specialists. We've sent him to other specialists," McPhee said. "Everybody's in agreement, he's in a good place right now."

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