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January 3, 2012 | 10:58am ET
Skinner back on the ice

Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner returned to practice on Monday in the latest step in his recovery from a concussion, according to the Raleigh News & Observer.

The 19-year-old skated for the first time in a month since he suffered a concussion during a hit on Dec. 7 against the Oilers in Edmonton.

"It was fun to get out there with everyone," Skinner told the News & Observer. "I haven't been out there with that many body, that much noise, kind of moving around. I wasn't sure how I was going to react with all that noise, that emotion. It was good."

There remains no timetable for Skinner's return to game action as he has yet to be cleared for contact.

The Canes hold a record of 4-4-2 in the 10 games Skinner has missed with the injury and sit 11 points out of a playoff spot.

In 30 games this season, Skinner has collected 12 goals and 12 assists for 24 points.

Meanwhile, news wasn't as optimistic for defenseman Joni Pitkanen, who also sustained a concussion on Dec. 6 against the Calgary Flames. Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller mentioned the 28-year-old is "not as far along in his recovery."

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