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Kessel cleared for action

Posted by Fluto Shinzawa, Globe Staff  January 28, 2009 01:01 PM

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Phil Kessel, cleared for action, will be all smiles if he dresses tomorrow against New Jersey. (AP Photo)

Phil Kessel, who made it through the entire practice today (his first since being sidelined with mononucleosis), was cleared for contact yesterday. Kessel said he felt fine today and looks forward to get back into the lineup. Kessel wore a protective wrap around his midsection to protect his spleen as a precaution.

Kessel remained on the ice for some solo skills work. Kessel is in line to play tomorrow against the Devils.

"Hopefully after today and after tomorrow's morning skate, he should be able to come back," Claude Julien said.

Kessel last played on Jan. 10 against Carolina. Kessel said he didn't feel like his usual self for several weeks before he was diagnosed.

"I thought I had it for a while," Kessel (24-17--41) said. "I went in there probably about a month before. They said no, but I knew I had it. Whatever, though. It's finished now."

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