St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk is close to returning to the lineup, coach Ken Hitchcock said Wednesday.
Shattenkirk has been out since Oct. 13 with a lower-body injury. He did not practice Wednesday and will not play Thursday against the Anaheim Ducks, but Hitchcock said Shattenkirk is 95 percent healed.
"We want him at 100 so we're trying different aspects to see if we can get it," Hitchcock said. "He's worked really hard, he's skated extra, he's done all the extra work. But it's stalled. By taking the day off and doing all the work off-ice that he did, we're hoping we can crack it through the last five percent. We're right there. We've got to find the right balance between the work and the rest. Today was not a scheduled work day, but with everything that happened yesterday we decided to put him into it. We'll see how he is tomorrow. He's days away; he's not weeks away."
Shattenkirk has one assist in three games this season and played more than 22 minutes in his first two games.
Last season he had eight goals and 44 points in 56 regular-season games, and eight assists in six Stanley Cup Playoff games.