After injuries broke up the Sharks’ defensive corps at the start of the new year, it looks like San Jose’s blue line is inching closer to getting the band back together.
Injured defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic isn’t likely to see game action, although coach Peter DeBoer called him a game-time decision against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday. The news was reported by Paul Gackle of the San Jose Mercury News.
“We’ll see how he feels," DeBoer told the media after Friday’s practice. "I think he’s getting closer.”
Vlasic has been sidelined since the beginning of the month when he sustained an upper-body injury against the Colorado Avalanche. He participated in the Sharks’ practice in Tampa Bay on Friday ahead of the game against the Lightning – the first time he has been a full participant in team practice since sustaining the injury.
While it’s a positive sign Vlasic has rejoined his teammates, DeBoer remains cautious about putting him back in the lineup too soon.
“We’re not going to put him out there and get him reinjured,” the Sharks’ bench boss said. “Especially with the 10-day break on the horizon. But if he can help us and get in there then he will.”
Vlasic has registered 11 points (one goal, 10 assists) in 42 games played so far this season for Team Teal.
Sticking with the theme of blueliners: Erik Karlsson was absent from morning skate on Friday with an undisclosed ailment. DeBoer told the media he was taking another maintenance day and is expected to be in the lineup Saturday in Tampa Bay.