Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne is making some nice strides in practice, but it’s still not clear when he’ll actually suit up for a game, the Tennessean reports.
Specifically, Rinne was able to drop to his knees to make saves and generally move around more fluidly than before on Monday.
“This last week was the first time I was taking shots, and on my knees, moving laterally and stuff like that,” Rinne said. “Obviously I need to get more repeats, a lot more ice time, but I’m feeling good, and that’s the main thing.”
Rinne underwent hip surgery on May 9 after being hampered by it for much of the 2013 season.
While he’s obviously making progress, Rinne admitted that there’s still no timetable for his return to actual game action. Simply enough, he said it’s “up to my hip.”
The 30-year-old Finn saw his save percentage slide from .923 in 2011-12 to .910 in 2013 and was under .500 (15-6-8 in 43 games played) as both the goalie and his team struggled.
Nashville paid up big this summer, yet the biggest factor for success might come down to a healthy Rinne being at the top of his game, especially since they’re rolling with an inexperienced backup in Carter Hutton.
So far, the outlook seems positive.