Morrisonn, Schultz Practicing
As expected, injured defensemen Shaone Morrisonn (upper body) and Jeff Schultz (undisclosed) are on the ice for this morning's practice and are participating fully.
But GM George McPhee just told me that he doesn't want Morrisonn or Schultz in the lineup if they aren't 100-percent. So prospect Sami Lepisto is still here just in case. (Minor leaguer Tyler Sloan is also here, but only for practice purposes).
Also, center David Steckel (broken finger) has been assigned to the fourth line with Donald Brashear and Matt Bradley, so it looks like he'll be good to go Friday.
Update: Both Morrisonn and Schultz said they are improving and hope to be ready for Game 1. But they also said tomorrow's practice will be the big test. Bruce Boudreau confirmed that Steckel will be ready.
"It's a day-to-day type thing and I don't know if they'll be ready for Friday," Boudreau said. "It's more aches and pains than anything. If they are ready, they'll be playing. If they aren't, then we're very comfortable with Steve [Eminger], who has played very good. And Sami has played very good when he's come up."
I'm writing about the Flyers for tomorrow's paper, and how they've gotten back to their roots this season. They've always played physical brand (opposing fans might call it borderline dirty) of hockey, but they've definitely developed a reputation after all of the suspensions early on. The Caps are a physical team too, but the Flyers' hard-hitting and net-crashing style will be one more thing they'll have to think about come Friday.
"We know how they play," Boudreau said. "The prototypical Philadelphia team is an aggressive, in your face kind of team. That's how the fans want it, and that's how they've been since 1972."
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