Already without Taylor Hall the Edmonton Oilers will close out their six-game road trip against the Montreal Canadiens without Ryan Smyth. And they may also be lining up without Jordan Eberle.

Eberle missed the last two days of practice while Smyth has returned to Edmonton with an unspecified injury. He did skate on Sunday.

That has opened the door for Tyler Pitlick who was recalled from the AHL Oklahoma City Barons. Pitlick has yet to play an NHL game. Ryan Jones will draw into the lineup as well.

“You could argue Jordan has been our best forward and a big part of our team” head coach Dallas Eakins said Monday. “Just running practice without him isn’t for the faint-hearted. We’ll cross our fingers that he’s good for tomorrow but we have to be careful too.

“We don’t want to rush him and have this turn into something bigger.”

Eberle said on Sunday he had just woken up stiff and sore but wasn’t specific about whether or not it was his back.

Hall meanwhile was injured in Saturday’s 3-1 Oilers victory over the Ottawa Senators and flew back to Edmonton on Sunday to have an MRI done on his left knee.

“Even before I knew how (Eberle) was I let our medical staff know I didn’t want him skating on Sunday. He plays lots of minutes for us and it’s not like practice is going to help him get better right now.

“Those are both guys you want in the lineup.”

The Canadiens 5-3-0 have gaping holes in their lineup too. Daniel Briere (concussion) and Brandon Prust (shoulder) are out along with Max Pacioretty Alexei Emekin George Parros and Douglas Murray.

When the teams met in Edmonton on Oct. 10 Montreal scored a 4-1 victory.

Potter gets back on iceA week before the Oilers’ training camp opened in September a wonky back took defenceman Corey Potter out of action and for the next month there wasn’t improvement.

He is finally back on the ice practising with the team and expects he’ll have a conditioning stint in Oklahoma City before he returns to the Oilers lineup.