Injury unlikely to stop Tjarnqvist

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:58 AM ET

VANCOUVER -- Daniel Tjarnqvist's pubic bone is apparently less inflamed than it was before.

That's normally more information than you need to know over breakfast, but in this case it means the Oilers are a step closer to another veteran defenceman.

Tjarnqvist, who's been sidelined with the painful condition for 13 of the last 14 games, took the morning skate yesterday in Vancouver and declared himself close to ready.

"It's a lot better than it was in L.A. (the first time he tried to come back, after missing three games). A big difference. I think it's coming along."

An inflamed pubic bone usually means ligament trouble in the pubic area, a discomfort Tjarnqvist says he'll have to live with for the rest of the season.

"Believe me, it's not the place where you want to have an injury," he said.

"The pain is still there, and it's going to be there for the rest of the year, but it's a big difference between now and before. It's getting better and better every day."

Head coach Craig MacTavish hasn't ruled him out for tomorrow afternoon's game in Denver.

"It's at the point where it's what he can play with (pain-wise)," said the coach.

"At the same time we don't want to set him back again. We're just trying to determine what is realistic pain to play with and what's not going to make it worse."


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