The San Jose Sharks got some promising news as star defenseman Erik Karlsson, who has missed most of the second half of the season with a groin injury, skated for 30 minutes this morning at the team’s morning skate for the first time since he re-injured his groin on Feb. 16, according to Paul Gackle of the Mercury News. Regardless, Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer said that Karlsson still is not close to returning.
“Good sign. Out there, no setbacks. No pain,” DeBoer said. “First step, obviously. We’re not close yet.”
Karlsson skated figure eights around the faceoff circles, practiced hard stops, and sprinted down the ice at full speed several times. Karlsson missed nine games after initially getting injured on Jan. 16. He returned for four games in February, but re-injured it on Feb. 23.
- In a mailbag series, The Athletic’s J.D. Burke (subscription required) writes that he wouldn’t be surprised if the Vancouver Canucks look to be active in the free-agent defense market, suggesting the Canucks could opt to make a big offer this season on Winnipeg Jets’ free agent Tyler Myers. With the Jets expected to have even more cap problems than usual with several big restricted free agents to take care of this summer, including Patrik Laine, Kyle Connor and Jacob Trouba, the team might have to allow Myers to leave to free up some cap room. The 29-year-old Myers would be a big addition if Vancouver wants to make a big offer to the 6-foot-8, 229-pound blueliner.
- Sportsnet’s Rick Dhaliwal writes that the Vancouver Canucks and the representation for prospect Jett Woo have had positive talks about bringing the physical blueliner on board soon. The team’s 2018 second-round pick has had a breakout season with the WHL’s Moose Jaw Warriors with 12 goals, 62 points and 63 penalty minutes in 61 games this season.
- The Calgary Flames are adding some much needed depth to their blueline as defenseman Michael Stone is expected to play tonight in his first game in 125 days, according to Ryan Dittrick of NHL.com. Stone hasn’t played since Nov. 11 since he was diagnosed with a blood clot and placed on blood thinners. Regardless, Stone expects an easier transition back to the ice since he was able to get back on the ice four days after starting blood thinners and has been able to stay in good cardio shape the whole time. Stone has played 11 games this year and has four assists. He just returned from the Stockton Heat of the AHL, where he got three games of conditioning in.