NHL notes: Banged-up Holmgren back at work

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:06 AM ET

Philadelphia Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren is back at work and his captain, Chris Pronger, will soon rejoin him.

Pronger, who had back surgery in May, has been skating on his own recently and the goal is for him to be play in the season opener Oct. 6 in Boston against the Bruins, Holmgren told Philadelphia Sports Daily.

Pronger also had foot, hand and knee surgery during the past year.

"Physically, I think Chris is finding out that he feels better than he thought he would," Holmgren said Tuesday. "He has pushed the envelope the last few days on the ice, shooting the puck. I asked him the other day how far behind he is from a normal year and he said he would have began skating a couple weeks ago.

"I think he's right on track with all he has been through and I'm excited about him being ready at the start of the season and I think he is, too."

Holmgren is recovering from broken ribs and a broken shoulder stemming from a bicycle crash Sept. 5.

NHL-KHL 'move in step'?

Ties between the NHL and KHL could be strengthened in the aftermath of last week's plane crash that wiped out the entire Lokomotiv Yaroslavl hockey team.

United by grief over the tragedy in Russia, the leagues might be able to repair their strained relationship, KHL president Alexander Medvedev said in a statement Tuesday.

"I would like very much for this to be no mere surge of emotion, but that we move in step with each other," Medvedev said on the KHL website. "The grief is felt by the whole hockey family. Now we can take a new view of all our differences with the NHL. I repeat once again: when we cooperate we can achieve much more for hockey than when in conflict or in isolation."

Medvedev said he has agreed to meet NHL commissioner Gary Bettman in the near future so they can "consider how we can further work together."

Sabres good to go

Buffalo Sabres forwards Jason Pominville and Derek Roy, both of whom are coming off serious injuries, say they will be ready for the start of training camp this weekend.

Roy missed four months with a torn quad muscle and returned at less than 100% for Buffalo's playoff series with the Philadelphia Flyers while Pominville had a tendon in his leg cut earlier in the series.

But both told BuffaloNews.com Monday they're completely healed and ready to go. Pominville still needs to be cleared by team doctors but he expects no problems.

Back in Jersey

Forward Petr Sykora has been invited to training camp by his former team, the New Jersey Devils.

The 34-year-old, who had 145 goals and 205 assists in 445 games with the Devils from 1995-2002, was one of five free agents New Jersey is bringing into camp.

Ex-Florida Panthers winger Steve Bernier, former Roronto Maple Leafs defenceman Anton Stralman, junior winger J.T. Barnett and Thomas Nesbitt, who played last season with the Ottawa 67's, are the other long-shots.

Sykora split last season with Plzen of the Czech league and Minsk Dynamo of the KHL.

Penguins feeling blue

The dark-blue jerseys the Pittsburgh Penguins wore in the 2011 NHL Winter Classic at Heinz Field will become the team's new third jersey.

The Penguins will wear the sweaters 12 times during the season, all at home, starting Oct. 15 against the Buffalo Sabres.

They feature the team's original logo from 1967 -- a skating penguin wearing a scarf.


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