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Anthony Duclair Could Return to Florida Panthers This Week

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Florida panthers duclair
Anthony Duclair, seen here practicing in Minnesota last Monday morning, could be back in the Florida Panthers lineup this week. — Photo courtesy @FlaPanthers

After an eight-month recovery from a torn Achilles, Anthony Duclair is nearing a return to the Florida Panthers lineup — perhaps by the end of the week.

Duclair is on track to make his season debut Friday against the Buffalo Sabres depending on how he feels with two practices prior to that game.

“We worked him real hard a couple of days ago and he is a little bit stiff,” coach Paul Maurice said, “but I don’t think it’s a setback. It’s what we expect to happen with it.

“When we put him on the ice, we want him to be and feel 100 percent every time, so if we push him really hard, it may take a day or two before he’s back on the ice.

“But we’re still kind of shooting for that Buffalo game. He is going to have to go through two hard days this week to get into it.”

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Duclair playing Friday is not set in stone — as he still needs to get through Wednesday and Thursday’s practice — but the team is optimistic about it.

”We can move him to day-to-day in my mind,” Maurice said.

”We’ll see if we’re gonna push him again this week. If it’s sore, then he won’t. We just got to wait. He is not going into a game with any kind of liability with that Achilles, but we still have to push him. If they’re happy with the healing, we’ll see.”

Duclair has been skating with the team since December and shed the yellow, non-contact jersey going into the team’s four-game road trip.

He did not have much time to practice in December and January with the team playing a heavy stretch of road games but with a lot of home games — and a lot of practice days coming — he should have plenty of time to get himself back into the swing of things.

”From November going straight through the end of December, we probably only had one or two real practices,” Maurice said.

”Now we’ll get into some time where we can get back-to-back practices and push guys hard and then come off in the next day and it’s not a game day the following. He has lots of opportunity to get healthier.”

PANTHERS ON DECK

ANAHEIM DUCKS AT FLORIDA PANTHERS

  • When: Monday, 1 p.m.
  • Where: FLA Live Arena, Sunrise
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida; NHL Network
  • Radio: WPOW 96.5 FM-2; WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932
  • Season Series (Florida leads 1-0): Panthers 5, Ducks 3 (Nov. 6)
  • Last season: Florida won 2-0
  • All-time regular season series: Florida leads 20-14-2, 3 ties
  • Up Next for the Panthers: Buffalo at Florida, Friday, 7 p.m.

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