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LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr, who has been out for a month with a knee injury, says he has been cleared to play, but he sat out Wednesday's 3-2 OT win in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals against the New York Rangers.
"He's getting closer," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said after Wednesday's morning skate. "With only the one game, the way it's broke out this week, we probably wouldn't play him tonight."
Regehr, who suffered the knee injury in Game 1 of the team's Western Conference semifinal series against the Anaheim Ducks, had already been cleared for contact. He skated with his teammates Friday for the first time since suffering the injury and went through Wednesday's morning skate feeling he could play if needed.
"I feel ready," Regehr said. "It just comes down to a coach's decision, what they want to do with the lineup. ... I feel good."
Regehr had said during Tuesday's Stanley Cup media day that he felt ready to play in Game 1 but would sit down with Sutter and see what his plan was.
"I think it's going to be a coach's decision," Regehr said. "I think that I've been working hard at getting back to feeling like I can be ready to roll. At this point it's whatever Darryl would like me to be. If he feels he would like me in the lineup, I feel like I'm ready to go. If he wants to stay with the same lineup that was successful in Game 7 against Chicago, I totally understand that, too."
Sutter talked to Regehr after Wednesday's morning skate, and there's a chance he could return for Game 2 on Saturday.
"I'm just working to try to stay ready," Regher said. "I feel that I'm really close. I have taken a little bit of contact and done some one-on-ones and things like that. All that helps. I was off the ice for a long time so right now I'm trying to work as hard as I can so I can feel like I'm ready to roll. It's a decision that has to be made by trainers, doctors, myself and coaches ... at some point.
"I've done a little bit of contact, but not a huge amount. It's really hard to just get in practices at this time, too, because it's the playoffs, travel, especially with the last series we just didn't get in a lot of practice time."
While Regehr has been out since May 3, he has been skating with the team since Game 6 of the conference finals against the Blackhawks and believes that time with the team during practice and warm-ups will help with the rust factor when and if he ultimately returns during the finals.
"It was nice to go into even just the warm-up in Game 7 against Chicago because there's the physical part of the game but something even more important is the preparation, the mental side of it," Regehr said. "Being with the guys in there and going through the mental preparation that was really important because I hadn't done that for four weeks. That type of stuff needs to come around, too. It's not just how you are doing physically."