Itís been over a month since Denis Grebeshkov has lined up on the Edmonton Oilers blue line.
However, the Oilers defenceman is expected to make his return to lineup Tuesday when the Los Angeles Kings come to town.
ďIím feeling pretty good,Ē said Grebeshkov following practice yesterday. ďIíve actually been feeling pretty good for a while now and Iím all ready to go.Ē
Hurt on the last shift of the game against the Buffalo Sabres on Nov. 11, Grebeshkov has missed the last 13 games with a knee injury.
He was ready to make a return Friday in St. Louis, but the Oilers decided to keep him out one more day for precautionary reasons. They also werenít keen to make changes to a lineup that had won four consecutive road games and were going for a record fifth.
ďI know for me, Iím just going to have to keep it simple because itís been a while since Iíve played a game,Ē Grebeshkov said. ďThe first game, I just want to get back into the game and get that feeling, so Iím not going to try and do too much.Ē
Acquired in a trade from the New York Islanders for Marc-Andre Bergeron nearly three years ago, Grebeshkov has developed into a solid all-around defenceman.
Prior to getting hurt, the native of Yaroslavl, Russia had three goals and seven assists in 19 games. Heís expected to be part of Russiaís entry in the upcoming Winter Olympics.
ďItís never easy to be out of the lineup,Ē Grebeshkov said. ďItís good though that weíve been winning games lately because thatís huge for us.
ďI think for me the first game might be a little tough for me as far as getting back into game shape, but I hope Iím able to get through it all right and go on from there.Ē