Sniper Max Pacioretty hit a major fitness milestone on Wednesday as he took part in a practice with the Carolina Hurricanes.
The ex-captain of the Montreal Canadiens, however, wore a non-contact jersey. Two other crippled Canes, forward Jesper Fast and goaltender Frederik Andersen, also skated.
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Pacioretty has yet to play in 2022-23 after suffering a torn Achilles tendon last offseason. He had been acquired from the Vegas Golden Knights in July in return for future considerations.
If the native of Connecticut picks up where he left off on his return to the game, the “Canes” can count on one of the most productive veterans of the Bettman circuit. He had 19 goals and 37 points in 39 games last season, and had more or less a point per game in his two previous campaigns.
Rod Brind’Amour’s men are also struggling to find the back of the net in 2022-2023. Only six teams in the Bettman Tour have scored fewer goals per game (2.82) than the Hurricanes.
Pacioretty is spending the last season of a pact earning him $7 million annually. He will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.