|The Edmonton Oilers Gilbert Brule is ready to return to the lineup after missing almost a month due to injury and illness. (QMI Agency file photo)
EDMONTON - Gilbert Brule is ready to go.
All the Edmonton Oilers’ forward needs is to pass the fitness test and earn a spot in the lineup.
He’s not expected to play Saturday against the Ottawa Senators.
“I feel good,” Brule said after practicing with the team on Friday. “I’m not injured, I’m not sick, I’m just waiting to do the test in order to get back in the lineup.”
Brule, 24, has not played since scoring a goal on Jan. 6 in a 2-1 win, at home, over the New York Islanders.
The local product was forced out of the lineup with a sprained ankle and was then knocked out by the flu bug following the all-star break. He has six goals and two assists in 34 games this season.
“I’ve been out for so long, I feel like I haven’t been able to show what I can do for a while,” Brule said. “Hopefully when I get in there, I can play a pretty good game.”
Having been unable to skate due to his ankle and then quarantined, so not to spread the virus around the dressing room, Brule has been way from his teammates for over a month.
“I felt so out of the loop around here,” Brule said. “They were on the road for a while and I felt like I didn’t know anyone when they came back.
“It’s definitely good to be around the guys and skating with them.”
In order to get back in the lineup, Brule will have to pass the team’s fitness test, which is administered to every player returning from an extended absence. It’s one the Oilers’ centre is very familiar with.
“I think even when you’re playing, it’s tough for a lot of guys to pass,” Brule said. “I’ve done it three times this year. I did it a couple of times last year. It’s not a fun test by any means, but it’s a pretty good judge of where you’re at.”