The prognosis for a ninth season of the ABC medical comedy "Scrubs" just keeps improving.

According to media reports, Sarah Chalke is signed to appear in six episodes of a new "Scrubs" season, while series star Zach Braff is close to a similar deal.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Donald Faison, John C. McGinley and Neil Flynn have all reached deals to return next season as regulars, but the entire direction of the show could then be contingent on other ABC pickups. Faison and Flynn have the ABC comedy pilots "The Law" and "the Middle" in first position and both pilots have drawn strong pickup buzz, particularly "The Law." McGinley also has a pilot in first position, the CBS drama "Back."

The trade adds that while Judy Reyes doesn't have a deal in place, she could return as a guest star.

Another interesting subplot stems from the rumor that ABC has suggested that both "Scrubs" and "Samantha Who?" might return with either a multi-camera format or a single/mulit hybrid.

The latest round of trade stories on the increasingly likely "Scrubs" renewal don't mention the fate of companion comedy "Better Off Dead."

An official announcement is expected to come on Tuesday (May 19) when ABC makes its upfront presentation to advertisers.

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