By LOU KORAC
ST. LOUIS -- The Blues received some good news on the injury front for a change.
Forward Oskar Sundqvist, who sustained a lower-body injury against the Tampa Bay Lightning Wednesday, won't be off the ice as long as the Blues had envisioned, according to coach Craig Berube.
Sundqvist, who was in a walking boot on his right foot for the remainder of the trip, was suspected to have an injury that possibly could have required surgery or miss considerable amount of time, but after being evaluated today by Blues doctors, the news was encouraging.
"It's better than we thought," Berube said. "It's not going to be long term. It looks like it should be a lot better than what we thought."
When asked if Sundqvist, who has 12 points (eight goals, four assists) in 26 games, including two goals in a 4-3 win against the Lightning before getting hurt when he was checked by Luke Schenn, was week-to-week, "Yeah, that's a pretty good term," Berube said.
Sundqvist was placed on injured-reserve on Thanksgiving, which means he has to miss at least a week, and puts him out tonight against the Penguins, Monday at Chicago and Wednesday at Pittsburgh, but now can return as early as a week from tonight against Toronto.
"He might, it just depends. I'm hopeful that he might come on this trip with us and he might go on the ice," Berube said. "We'll see. It was good news. He's not going to be long term."
Also, forward Alexander Steen skated today for the first time since sustaining a left high ankle sprain Nov. 6 against Edmonton.
Steen was to be re-evaluated in four weeks, which would put a re-evaluation time early next week.
"Not very long," Berube said of Steen's skating session today, "but he was out there."
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The Blues' projected lineup:
Jaden Schwartz-Brayden Schenn-Robert Thomas
Zach Sanford-Ryan O'Reilly-David Perron
Ivan Barbashev-Tyler Bozak-Troy Brouwer
Mackenzie MacEachern-Jacob de la Rose-Nathan Walker
Vince Dunn-Alex Pietrangelo
Jay Bouwmeester-Colton Parayko
Derrick Pouliot-Justin Faulk
Jordan Binnington will start in goal; Jake Allen will be the backup.
The healthy scratch will be Austin Poganski. Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder), Alexander Steen (ankle), Sammy Blais (wrist), Oskar Sundqvist (lower body) and Carl Gunnarsson (illness) are out. Robert Bortuzzo will serve the final game of his four-game suspension.
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The Penguins' projected lineup:
Jake Guentzel-Evgeni Malkin-Dominik Simon
Dominik Kahun-Jared McCann-Patric Hornqvist
Zach Aston-Reese-Teddy Blueger-Brandon Tanev
Alex Galchenyuk-Sam Lafferty-Joseph Blandisi
Brian Dumoulin-Kris Letang
Jack Johnson-John Marino
Marcus Pettersson-Chad Ruhwedel
Matt Murray will start in goal; Tristan Jarry will be the backup.
Healthy scratches are expected to be Zach Trotman and Juuso Riikola. Sidney Crosby (core muscle), Nick Bjugstad (lower body), Justin Schultz (lower body) and Bryan Rust (lower body) are all out.
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