Chris Pronger is confident he is making progress.

And Pronger said yesterday that he is "very" confident he will be able to return to the Flyers' lineup at some point during their first-round playoff series against Buffalo - even if it is not for Game 1.

Yesterday, Pronger took part in an early morning skate with assistant coach Kevin McCarthy, forward Ian Laperriere and defenseman Matt Walker, who cleared re-entry waivers later yesterday.

But it's today's workout that could act as a benchmark for where Pronger stands in his recovery. Don't be surprised to see Pronger skate in a full practice with his teammates for the first time in more than 2 weeks and attempt to participate in drills with stickhandling and shooting to provide a true test.

"Every day you feel better," Pronger said. "Come to practice [today] and see."

Pronger, who missed the Flyers' final 16 games after March 16 surgery on his right hand, has not been ruled out for tomorrow night's opening game of the Stanley Cup playoffs against Buffalo. There is still so much to be determined, as Pronger skated yesterday with a stick but did not handle a puck or take any shots.