Red Wings

Howard Penciled In To Start Sunday

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DETROIT, MI - JANUARY 23:  Jimmy Howard #35 of the Detroit Red Wings slides across the crease as Jason Arnott #44 of the St. Louis Blues hits the post on this scoring attempt during their NHL game at Joe Louis Arena on January 23, 2012 in Detroit, Michigan.  (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

DETROIT, MI – JANUARY 23: Jimmy Howard #35 of the Detroit Red Wings slides across the crease as Jason Arnott #44 of the St. Louis Blues hits the post on this scoring attempt during their NHL game at Joe Louis Arena on January 23, 2012 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

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Starting goaltender Jimmy Howard is close to returning from a broken right index finger sustained on Feb. 2. Coach Mike Babcock has penciled him in to start Sunday against San Jose, and didn’t rule out the possibility that he could return Friday vs. Nashville. Howard said he is feeling much better after taking shots in practice several days in a row. Howard, who said his conditioning is fine, will play with a regular stick, not the one with the notch cut out for his finger, which he had been using.

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