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Pronger improving, but not ready to skate

It still seems like a longshot that Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger will ever play again, but at least there is a flicker of optimism.

Pronger, who missed most of last season with post-concussion syndrome, visited a doctor in Pittsburgh a few days ago and showed some improvement, general manager Paul Holmgren said on Thursday.

"He's doing better, but not to the point where he can think about playing" right now, Holmgren said.

Asked if there was a chance Pronger could do some skating in the near future, Holmgren said, it's "too soon to consider that."

Pronger, a future Hall of Famer who will turn 38 on Oct. 10, had been living in a house he rented in Haddonfield. He and his family have moved to St. Louis, where his children are attending school.

If the season ever starts, the Flyers will get cap relief by placing Pronger on the LTIR list. If he retires, they will not get that relief, though that could change in the new CBA.

During the current lockout, Pronger ($7.2 million this season), Andrej Meszaros ($4.75 million), Matt Walker ($2 million) and Andreas Lilja ($700,000) will get paid by the Flyers because they were not cleared to play when the work stoppage went into effect.

Contact Sam Carchidi at or on Twitter @BroadStBull.