The Avs have won two straight in the best-of-7 series but trail the Sharks 3-2.
Kariya had returned to practice Monday for the first time in nearly a month. He has missed all 10 of Colorado's playoff games after spraining his right ankle in the season finale April 4.
He started skating on his own last week, made it through practice Monday without any problems and was deemed ready to go after the Avalanche's morning skate Tuesday.
Kariya signed with former teammate Teemu Selanne on the same day in the offseason in a move that was supposed to make Colorado one of the favorites to win the Stanley Cup.
Neither had the impact the Avalanche anticipated. Kariya played only 51 games because of a wrist injury and Selanne had one of his worst seasons. He had 11 goals and 25 assists in the regular season and his speed would give the Sharks one more player to worry about.
A win in Game 6 would preserve Colorado's chance to
become only the third team in NHL history to win a series after
trailing 3-0. Game 7 would be Thursday in San Jose.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.