Marc Staal doesn't know when -- or it -- he will make his return to the Rangers lineup during the playoffs. (Errol McGihon/QMI Agency)
WASHINGTON - Marc Staal is getting closer.
Exactly how close remains something not even he can pinpoint.
The New York Rangers defenceman has been skating for nearly a month and continues to make progress after taking a puck in the eye on Mar. 5.
Despite that progress, Staal didn't want to guess when -- or if -- he'd be ready to return for the Rangers' playoff series with the Washington Capitals, which got under way Thursday night at Verizon Center.
"I'm not going to speculate down that road of when it's going to happen," said Staal. "My body feels good, everything else is starting to come along. As soon as I'm not second-guessing myself or hesitating, (when) doing things that I normally do becomes automatic again, is when I can jump into a playoff-type game.
"That's a big part of it. If you go out there in a playoff game and you're thinking too much, you're going to get yourself in trouble."