Brunner: I’m ready to return

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The New Jersey Devils are one of five teams that are no more than a point behind in the race for the second Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.

These next few games could break that logjam for better or worse as they face tough St. Louis Blues tonight and follow it up with key contests against the Washington Capitals and New York Rangers.

At least they should be some extra help as Damien Brunner (knee) was very upbeat after Monday’s practice.

“I feel 100 percent and I’m ready to go,” Brunner declared, according to the Bergen Record.

He conceded that whether or not he’s good to return isn’t his call, but Devils coach Pete DeBoer said there was a “good chance” that he’d play tonight. On top of that, the Devils placed Cam Janssen on waivers in a move that was likely designed to clear a spot for Brunner.

Brunner hasn’t lived up to expectations this season, but he turned a corner right before he was hurt. The Devils will just have to hope that missing a month hasn’t permanently killed his comeback.