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Stars' Modano to return after missing 23 games

1/30/2007 - NHL Mike Modano Dallas Stars + more

Mike Modano was activated and is expected to return to the lineup for the Dallas Stars for the first time in more than a month in Tuesday night's game against the San Jose Sharks.

Modano, who has missed 23 games since Dec. 4 with a hip/groin
injury, skated hard again during practice Monday in San Jose,
Calif., where the Stars play their next two games. He said he felt
good after practice.

"I'm as close as I'm going to get, so the sooner I can get back
in, the better," Modano said Monday.

The Stars play against the Sharks again Thursday night, and at
St. Louis on Saturday night.

"It's more of a mental thing where I want to feel 100 percent
comfortable and confident. Until I get into a game, I won't know
for sure," Modano said. "I've just been waiting to feel
completely healthy as far as speed and explosiveness go, and I've
been getting close the last few days. I feel like I'm turning a
corner."

Modano returned to practice Thursday, the day after the NHL
All-Star game in Dallas that he wasn't able to play in because of
the injury.

Modano, a former No. 1 overall draft pick and the only player
remaining on the Stars' roster that made the move from Minnesota to
Dallas in 1993, is second in career goals and points for U.S.-born
players. His 495 goals trail Joe Mullen's 502, and his 1,203 points
trail Phil Housley.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.