Nikolai Khabibulin could return as soon as Friday

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin could return to action as soon as Friday vs. Columbus or Sunday afternoon vs. the New York Islanders. For the first time since dealing with a lower-body injury, Khabibulin skated with the entire team yesterday and has been making steady progress recently.

Published: 3/11/2009 12:01 AM
Khabibulin might be back in net soon

By Tim Sassone | Daily Herald Staff

Goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin returned to practice Tuesday and could be back in the Blackhawks’ lineup this weekend.

“He’s much better today,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “It was nice to see him in practice, and he looked pretty good, too. We’ll visit with him (Wednesday) as far as exactly when he’ll play, but he’s close.”

Khabibulin has missed the last 12 games with a groin injury.