LOS ANGELES — It has been a tough year for Luca Sbisa as the Golden Knights defenseman has been out of the lineup on four separate occasions with injuries.
Sbisa, who injured his right hand Feb. 27 and has not played since, is back skating with the team, but he may not be available until later in this series or the next round, depending whether the Knights can close out the Los Angeles Kings.
“I’m getting better, but not quite ready yet,” Sbisa said after the team’s Tuesday morning’s skate at the Staples Center prior to Game 4. “Obviously every time the boys get a win it bides me time, so that’s huge.”
Coach Gerard Gallant said Sbisa remains day to day.
“He’d had a minor setback, which cost him a few days, but he’s back skating and I expect him back in the near future,” Gallant said.
But even if he were 100 percent, he might not necessarily crack the lineup, given how well Jon Merrill has played. Merrill, teaming teamed with Colin Miller as the third defensive pairing, has seven blocked shots in three games and is a plus-2.
Sit and wait?
If the Knights are able to win their series early, it will mean wait and watch.
The NHL will not start any of its second-round series until the entire first round is complete. And with the Nashville-Colorado and Winnipeg-Minnesota series extended to five games or longer, it could mean some significant time off for the Knights.
The latest the first round is scheduled to begin is April 25, if Winnipeg and Minnesota were to meet in a Game 7.
One series can end Wednesday. The San Jose Sharks hold a 3-0 lead and will be playing at home against the Anaheim Ducks.
Ticket prices fall
With the Kings facing elimination Tuesday, ticket prices for Game 4 dropped significantly.
According to prices on secondary ticket website StubHub, upper level seats were being offered for less than $70 with lower level seats going for as little as $125 before fees. The Staples Center website showed tickets were still available Tuesday morning in the middle and lower levels, with prices starting at $131 for the middle level and $159.50 for lower level seats behind the goal.
Glass to Wolves
Knights prospect Cody Glass has been called up to the Chicago Wolves on the eve of the Calder Cup playoffs.
The center, selected by the Knights at No. 6 overall in the 2017 entry draft, led the Portland Winterhawks with 102 points (37 goals, 65 assists). Portland recently was eliminated from the Western Hockey League playoffs, losing to Everett in five games.
Game 1 of the Wolves-Rockford IceHogs series is Saturday.