Vancouver Canucks forward Bo Horvat has been medically cleared to travel and is set to practice with the team on Friday in Edmonton, the club announced Thursday.
Horvat has not played since fracturing his foot on December 5.
There is still no timetable for the return of the 22-year-old, but the Canucks said he was expected to return to the lineup soon.
Vancouver has back-to-back games on the road, starting with Saturday’s game in Edmonton against the Oilers. They play in Winnipeg on Sunday and some are speculating that Horvat could be in the lineup then.
Losing the London, Ontario, native hasn’t been easy for the Canucks, who were third in the Pacific Division when he was injured. They’ve since tumbled to seventh and put together a dismal 4-11-2 record without Horvat.
Horvat looked to be in line for a career year ahead of the injury. In 28 games, he has 20 points and was second on the team in both goals and assists.
Luckily, Brock Boeser has been more than impressive in Horvat’s absence.
Estimates had Horvat returning by the All-Star break, so this looks to be right on schedule if not a little ahead of the game. He should give his club a boost in the right direction, which may or may not make them into a playoff contender.
It may seem like a long shot to put the Canucks into the post-season, but they could do the trick if they can put together a shade over 50 points in their remaining contests. That’s not impossible, especially if Boeser keeps clicking along and Horvat picks up where he left off.
Even if pipe dreams of the playoffs are far off, Canucks fans have plenty of reason for celebration with news of Horvat’s imminent return. And at this point and time, that’s enough.