One day after tweaking his back during the morning skate and subsequently being kept out of the lineup Thursday evening against the Phoenix Coyotes, Canucks forward Chris Higgins was back skating Friday.
This is good news for the Canucks, a team dealing with numerous injuries and a possible suspension to one of its top blue liners.
With Higgins out of the lineup, defenseman Keith Ballard was moved up to the wing for Thursday’s 2-1 win over the Coyotes, while Andrew Gordon, recalled from the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League, was placed on the fourth line.
Canucks GM Mike Gillis told Team 1040 radio Friday morning that winger David Booth was set to have surgery on his left ankle Friday and could return for the playoffs.
Ryan Kesler is still out with a fractured bone in his foot and winger Zack Kassian re-aggravated an ailing back injury in a fight with Chris Stewart of the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday.
Canucks defenseman Alex Edler is scheduled to have a hearing with the Department of Player Safety, after he was given a major penalty for charging on a collision with Coyotes goalie Mike Smith behind the Phoenix net in the second period of Thursday’s game.