Were it up to him, Robert Esche would play this afternoon.
Trouble is, it's not up to him.
Asked whether it's hard to wait for a doctor to clear him, Esche, who yesterday morning participated in his first full-length practice, said with a smile.
"Yes," said the goaltender, sidelined since Feb. 2 with an injured knee. "In a word, yes. Especially when you feel good and you think you can be playing, but it's not my job to be a doctor. I have to let them make the decision."
Ken Hitchcock said he hopes that the doctors will provide the green light tomorrow and that Esche will be in uniform for Tuesday's game against Chicago.