Bertuzzi didn’t play in Thursday’s Game 1, which Detroit won 4-1, or in the regular-season finale because of a concussion and a neck injury. “He’s been cleared medically,” Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. “Now, he has to get cleared by our therapy people as far as being ready to play.
“If he’s ready to go, he’ll be in.”
Both teams will have another day to practise before playing Sunday in Game 2 of the best-of-seven series.
Bertuzzi skated briefly on his own Thursday and took part in an optional practice Friday.
“It felt pretty good,” he said. “We’ll see how it feels tomorrow after another hard skate.”
Detroit acquired the six-foot-three 242-pound forward from Florida on Feb. 27 – just before the NHL’s trading deadline – and he missed 10 games recovering from back surgery, then played in eight.
He played just 15 regular-season games for the Panthers and Red Wings, but said he’s in good enough shape to contribute in the playoffs.
“I’m fit enough. I don’t think that’s an issue,” Bertuzzi said. “It’s been an up-and-down year for sure.
“But I’m happy that my health is better, and it was nice to see the guys get a huge win.”
Bertuzzi has 554 points (232-322) in the regular season and playoffs over his 11-season career.