The Detroit Red Wings have officially activated Jakub Vrana from injured reserve, and expect him to play in tonight’s game against the Arizona Coyotes. Vrana has yet to play this season after undergoing shoulder surgery in late September, a procedure that has kept him out much longer than the initial four-month timeline. Vrana lit Detroit on fire last season after coming over from the Washington Capitals, scoring eight times in 11 games including a four-goal effort in his fourth appearance. He’ll try to continue that success now that he’s back, though it certainly may take him some time to get up to speed.
Interestingly enough, the Red Wings have actually moved Danny DeKeyser to injured reserve to make room. DeKeyser cleared waivers earlier today, which means he could have been assigned to the minor leagues. Instead, he’ll go to the injured list meaning he can stay with the team as he deals with whatever this new ailment is.
- The Pittsburgh Penguins have their own forward returning, as they have activated Teddy Blueger from injured reserve. Blueger hasn’t played since he suffered a broken jaw in a January game against the Winnipeg Jets, but is expected to resume his spot as a checking-line center for the Penguins tonight. The 27-year-old was actually on track to blow by his career-highs in goals and points before the injury (and still likely will by the end of the season) after scoring eight goals and 17 points in his first 40 games. Blueger missed 16 games following his jaw surgery.
- Erik Karlsson could be back this week as well, as San Jose Sharks head coach Bob Boughner told reporters including Curtis Pashelka of the Bay Area News Group that the veteran defenseman could suit up on Thursday. Karlsson was in the midst of a bounce-back season before undergoing forearm surgery in January and hasn’t played in nearly two months. In his first 33 games, the two-time Norris Trophy winner had 26 points, already eclipsing his total from the 2020-21 season.