Martin Brodeur back after injury

Updated: November 2, 2011, 7:39 PM ET
By Mike Mazzeo | Special to ESPNNewYork.com

NEWARK, N.J. -- The New Jersey Devils took on the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday night -- and had their future Hall of Fame goaltender between the pipes.

Martin Brodeur confirmed after the morning skate that he would make his first start in almost three weeks.

"I'm looking forward to it," Brodeur said before the game. "It's been a long time for me. I played one game but never got any momentum going as far as my game's concerned. When you rehab you try to go slow and that's what I did. I took my time and was able to push harder in the last few days. I felt comfortable enough to tell coach I was ready to be in there."

Brodeur hasn't played since bruising his right shoulder on Oct. 13 against the Los Angeles Kings. The 39-year-old finally returned to practice on Monday after several rehab sessions and declared himself ready to play on Tuesday. Brodeur is 0-1-0 with a 3.00 goals-against average and a .900 save percentage in two starts this season.

Johan Hedberg, who went 2-3-1 with a 2.61 goals-against average and one shutout in Brodeur's absence, returned to his backup role.

"We all thought Johan was doing a really good job in net," Zach Parise said. "He did more than we could've asked and gave us an opportunity to win every night. Marty's Marty and we're all excited to have him back."

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.

Mike Mazzeo

ESPN New York Writer

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