Mikael Backlund (knee) skated in practice on Monday.
Backlund will wear a knee brace upon his return and is getting close to returning as he was wearing a yellow non-contact jersey in practice Monday. "Yeah, it feels good," Backlund said. "I can do everything. The next step is the contact, being able to battle and stuff and see how that feels. We'll see when that is, but it felt good (Monday). I've pushed hard two days now. Every day, waking up, it's been a better day. I'm happy with that and happy with the progress . . . faster than projected." Backlund has three goals and four points in eight games this season as it was looking like he was beginning to emerge as a good center before his injury but we would wait a couple of games to see how he plays before activating him.