NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – He hasn’t played since May 18 after leaving during the third period of Game 4 against the Ducks, but Predators Captain Mike Fisher plans on being ready for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
Fisher practiced with the Preds for the first time Thursday and both head coach Peter Laviolette and General Manager David Poile are optimistic he’ll be ready Monday as the Preds face either the Ottawa Senators or Pittsburgh Penguins.
Fisher himself said after practice that he had not been cleared to play, but his goal was to get back for Game 1.
He also said it felt good to be back on the ice with the rest of his team.
“Felt pretty good. A lot better then I was a few days ago, so that’s a great sign, no question. The goal is to get back, obviously, to start but we’ll see how it goes here in the next little while so,” Fisher said.
He was the second center to be injured and miss the final two games of the Western Conference Final after Ryan Johansen needed emergency surgery and was ruled out for the remainder of the playoffs.
Having the team captain back on the ice would not only be good for the Preds depth throughout the lineup, but players said it was a big momentum boost to their hopes of winning the Stanley Cup.
“It’s a good sign getting him back and getting him moving around again. He’s gonna be a big reason why we make a push here,” said Ryan Ellis.
“It was great a big part of this team. Everybody knows our leader and the captain, so very happy. We all were really happy to see him on the ice,” said Pekka Rinne.
The Preds will hit the road to face the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.