The Vancouver Canucks are making headlines lately around the NHL with their goaltending controversy brewing stronger than ever and now Ryan Kesler returned to the ice to skate with his teammates.
The 28-year old has not been cleared for contact but will join up with his club when they head out on an eastern road trip this week to continue skating at practices and working out with the team’s medical staff.
Their top center, the Canucks could always use the services of Kesler despite getting terrific play from Zack Kassian so far this year. The gritty, sandpaper type, Kassian has filled a huge hole that Kesler left that was followed up by an injury to David Booth.
Kesler had his best season in 2010-11 when he scored 41 times and accumulated 73 points in 82 games for the Canucks, the same year he signed a 6-year, $30 million dollar deal to keep him in Vancouver long term.
A healthy Kesler for the playoffs could be dangerous for the Canucks, something they never had last season when they bowed out graciously to the Los Angeles Kings in the first round.
While Kesler has a long way to go before he’s taking part in any game action, resuming skating activities is the first step in what will surely be a welcomed return to the Canucks lineup.