DETROIT — Henrik Zetterberg is ready to return to the lineup.
“I’m feeling good out there,” Zetterberg said Tuesday. “I think the last step is just playing games.”
Zetterberg, who led the team in scoring during the regular season, missed the entire first round after suffering a sprained left knee on April 6 in Carolina.
He will play with a brace on his leg.
“You get used to it,” Zetterberg said about wearing the brace. “I think half the league is playing with braces now. It just takes a few practices and then you’re into it.
“Every morning you see how you react on the things you did the day before,” Zetterberg added. “Right now I’m back doing everything full out and there are still no setbacks.”
Prior to this season, Zetterberg had never missed a playoff game, playing in 97 straight.
“It’s great (to get Zetterberg back) because it puts one more person on the ice that the other team has to be aware of,” Wings goalie Jimmy Howard said. “Z’s got a knack for being great in the playoffs. We welcome him back with open arms. He’s great at shutting other top forwards down and finds a way to generate points, too.”
Zetterberg has 46 goals and 45 assists in the postseason.
Although he’ll wear a brace during games, Zetterberg does not have to wear the brace fulltime anymore, which is a relief.
“I don’t have to wear it all the time so I don’t get picked on in grocery stores anymore,” Zetterberg laughed. “So that’s nice.”