Patrick Kane returns to Blackhawks

Updated: December 29, 2010, 10:01 AM ET
By Jesse Rogers | ESPNChicago.com

ST. LOUIS -- The Chicago Blackhawks were near full strength when they lost 3-1 to the St. Louis Blues Tuesday night.

Patrick Kane had been cleared to play and was in the lineup skating with Jonathan Toews and Troy Brouwer.

Kane played 19:45 and was a minus-2 for the night.

"[It's] pretty exciting, pretty happy about it, too," Kane said after practice Tuesday morning.

Kane, who was officially activated hours before gametime, missed the past eight games with an ankle injury he suffered spinning away from a check in a game against Calgary earlier this month.

"It's probably as good as it's going to get for a while," Kane said. "I might have to deal with it for a little bit but that's another thing I'll have to worry about.

"I don't feel it on the ice. Hopefully it's the same way during a game. That would be awesome, but I'm sure it's going to be a little different in a game atmosphere."

Forward Fernando Pisani was under the weather and missed the game. Marty Turco started in net for the Blackhawks and Ty Conklin started for the Blues.

The Blackhawks' healthy scratches were Jordan Hendry and Ryan Johnson. They've won four games in a row. St. Louis has won the past three.

Jesse Rogers covers the Blackhawks for ESPNChicago.com.

Jesse Rogers | email

Chicago Cubs beat reporter
Jesse joined ESPN Chicago in September 2009 and covers the Chicago Cubs for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.