VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Manny Malhotra returned to practice Friday with the Vancouver Canucks, still hoping to play in the Stanley Cup Finals less than three months after a career-threatening eye injury.

Malhotra skated mostly with the Canucks' reserve forwards at the University of British Columbia. Coach Alain Vigneault won't give any hints whether Malhotra will play in Game 2 against the Boston Bruins on Saturday night, but the veteran center remains hopeful he can contribute in the Canucks' final games.

"This is not about me wanting a sentimental shift," said Malhotra, a faceoff specialist and standout defensive forward. "It's about me feeling I can contribute."

Malhotra hasn't played since a deflected puck hit him in the face March 16.