Pisani still not quite ready

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:38 AM ET

LOS ANGELES -- Upon further review, Fernando Pisani is NOT a step away from returning to the Oilers' lineup.

He looked and felt pretty close to getting a green light, and was expecting to play either today in Los Angeles or very soon after that, but as a last precautionary measure before allowing Pisani back the medical staff took an X-ray of his ankle and they didn't like what they saw.

"They weren't completely thrilled with it," said head coach Craig MacTavish. "We won't see him on this trip, barring a miracle cure."

Pisani, who broke his ankle Nov. 17, has been out longer than he'd like, but he knows this is for the best.

"I thought I'd be playing by now, but it's one of those situations where you don't want to rush and injure yourself again," he said.

"You have to do the smart thing, and right now they feel it's best to wait a little longer.

"It feels pretty good, but if I go into the boards awkwardly or someone falls on it or something when it's not fully healed, I'm going to be right back where I started 12 weeks ago."

CRUTCH AND GREB

Elsewhere on the bad news injury front, Denis Grebeshkov's high ankle sprain looks like it will keep him out until late March, at least.

"The MRI revealed a pretty significant tear," said MacTavish. "He's going to be in a boot (plastic boot cast) for 10 days and we'll reassess it at that point, but our best guess is four to six weeks."

The Canadiens were griping and moaning about the two-game suspension Tomas Plekanec got for slew-footing Grebeshkov into the end boards, but MacTavish said there was no grey area on the play.

"It was definitely something that warranted a suspension, there's no question about that. It was a dirty play, a careless play and it was handled accordingly."

SEND IT LIKE PECKHAM

With Edmonton down to five defencemen after injuries to Grebeshkov and Lubomir Visnovsky (season-ending shoulder surgery), the Oilers called Springfield for help.

Defenceman Theo Peckham arrived yesterday after a long travel day from the east coast.

"It's exciting," said the six-foot-two, 223-pounder, who is Springfield's leading scorer among defencemen.

"Every day you look at your phone and hope today is going to be the day you get that call.

"When you finally do get it, you're not worried about flying or how long it's going to take, you're just worried about getting there and playing."

This is Peckham's fourth call-up of the season. He didn't dress in the first one and was minus two in each of the other games, in Pittsburgh and Detroit.

He knows, with Edmonton short on the blue-line, that this is a great chance to make an impression.

" It's definitely incentive to work that much harder,"he said.

"You can't take anything for granted; there are a lot of guys working hard down in Springfield.

"I have to stay on my toes and make sure I bring my best game every day."

TRIPPED OUT

New owner Daryl Katz took advantage of a break in the schedule to treat the club to a round at the exclusive Big Horn Golf Club and posh dinner in Palm Springs on Thursday.

MacTavish says there's only one way for the players to pay him back.

"To win that game (today)," he said.

"I don't doubt that they'll be highly motivated; it's human nature that you want to show your appreciation for something like that."


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