Closing In On Metro Title, Surging Blueshirts Likely To Have 'The King' Playing Soon

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist has been cleared to practice after being sidelined for more than a month with a vascular injury to his neck.

The Rangers made the announcement Tuesday after Lundqvist had an exam and met with specialists.

Lundqvist was injured Jan. 31 when he was struck by a shot by Carolina’s Brad Malone. He finished the game and played two nights later. Further tests revealed the severity of the injury.

Lundqvist, who won the Vezina Trophy back in 2011-12, has been working out on the ice, but facing only low shots. The Rangers’ career wins and shutouts leader was 16-4 with a 1.82 goals against average and one shutout in 20 games before the injury. Overall this season, he is 25-11-3 with a 2.25 goals against average and five shutouts.

New York (44-17-7), which headed in Tuesday’s action tied for the NHL lead with 95 points, has thrived behind backup Cam Talbot, going 15-2-3.

The Rangers are next in action Wednesday against the Chicago Blackhawks at Madison Square Garden.

The Hockey News reported Monday afternoon that Lundqvist would make his return to the ice next Tuesday against the Los Angeles Kings. At the time, the Rangers offered no timetable for when he would play again.

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