Defenseman Derian Hatcher is recovering from a mild knee sprain but is expected to be back on the ice in a few days. ... Coach Ken Hitchcock said he plans to have his roster finalized as early as Sunday. He was impressed with the level of play of several bubble players likely ticketed for the Phantoms. "The thing that stuck with me was the competitiveness of the players that were with the Phantoms last year,'' he said. "The tempo was so high today, you would be hard-pressed to keep it going for four straight days.'' ... Hitchcock would like to get Hatcher into a few preseason games because the defenseman is scheduled to serve a three-game suspension at the start of the regular season (for an '04 incident) and the coach doesn't want a long gap of inactivity. ... Ex-Phantoms Jeff Carter and Patrick Sharp were paired together in the morning scrimmage.
Either Wayne got it wrong or the club has re-evaluated its position on Hatcher's injury.
as someone else said:
"They have to establish that he's not on injured reserve by playing him. That way the first 3 days of his suspension will be filled while he is still recovering. He won't play much in those exhibition games."