Boston Bruins winger Marco Sturm proved his toughness by playing through discomfort in his neck and dizziness after a hit Nov. 13 in Montreal. He actually battled for two games after that contest before succumbing to the symptoms and then finding out he’d suffered a concussion.

Today, Sturm returned to practice with his teammates for the first time since he played against Toronto Nov. 17.

“I feel good. Last week it started getting better,” he said after the Bruins practiced at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington. “Every day now, getting better, so that’s a good sign. And I’m just happy to be back with the boys and hopefully I’m going to be ready soon.”

Sturm only started light bike riding over the weekend, and he also went through a couple light skates on his own. He has two more days of practice to come through symptom-free and prove to head coach Claude Julien he should be back in the line-up Thursday night in Tampa.

“I think it’s just giving him a chance here to get back into practices,” Julien said. “He’s feeling, obviously, very good. Today was a good little test for him but we’ll try to work him in and we’ll see how he feels before we get to Thursday. If he’s ready then, then no doubt we’ll see him.”

When Chuck Kobasew returned from a lengthy absence because of a broken foot, Julien took his time reinserting him into the line-up and then gradually gave him more ice time and moved him up the depth chart. I wouldn’t suspect a similar scenario with Sturm, whose best value to the Bruins is as a top-six forward.