Blackhawks' Kruger activated

Blackhawks' Kruger activated
January 13, 2012, 4:50 pm
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Chicago Blackhawks center Marcus Kruger kept improving every day he took the ice this past week. Now he's ready to return.

Kruger was activated off the injured reserve list and fellow forward Ben Smith was reassigned to the Rockford IceHogs on Friday morning. The Blackhawks have back-to-back contests in Detroit on Saturday and here against San Jose on Sunday.

The Blackhawks center had been coming back from a concussion sustained around Christmas. He skated hard at practices this week and said he felt better with each passing day and is now cleared for contact.

Smith was recalled for the past two games against Columbus and Minnesota. He scored a goal against the Blue Jackets on Tuesday but played just over eight minutes in the Blackhawks' 5-2 victory over the Wild on Thursday night. Smith has 10 goals and eight assists in 19 games with Rockford this season.