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Ward returns to Canes practice

Cam Ward was back on the ice Monday at PNC Arena, getting in some work, taking some shots.

Ward, who has been sidelined with a concussion, last played Jan. 15 against Vancouver and was placed on injured reserve Jan. 20. Canes coach Bill Peters said there’s a chance Ward will be available after the NHL All-Star break.

Ward was out early on the ice Monday and did not go through the entire practice.

“I think he’s going to be able to get cleared post All-Star break,” Peters said. “He’ll be able to join us and play and start practicing in Calgary.” That’s the best-case scenario right now.

The Canes, who host the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday, will face the Flames Feb. 3 in the first of three road games.

Goalie Eddie Lack has started the past four games, making 33 stops Sunday in the 5-2 win over the Flames at PNC Arena, and will be in net against the Blackhawks as Daniel Altshuller again serves as the backup. Lack had a season-high 35 saves Dec. 27 when the Canes edged the Blackhawks 2-1 in Chicago.

Forward Riley Nash, out the past two games with an illness, returned to practice Monday. Defenseman Brett Pesce, who has been slowed by a foot injury, did not practice but is “day to day” could play against Chicago, Peters said.

Monday was defenseman Noah Hanifin’s 19th birthday. Hanifin, the Canes’ first-round draft pick in 2015, is the youngest active player in the NHL.

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