Oilers defenceman Steve Staios sees iron man streak end
The Edmonton Oilers ironman will very likely see his streak come to an end this evening when his team faces off against the Chicago Blackhawks.
"Steve was not good today so he's very unlikely for tonight," said Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish.
Staios missed the morning skate after suffering an injury during Tuesday's game against the Calgary Flames.
"I guess it's tough to forecast these types of things. According to Kenny (Ken Lowe) it's three days or three weeks," he said. "According to (Dr.) David Reid, he could be ready to go next game or it might be a little bit longer.
"At least we have three days off after this game so there's some time to let it heal."
Tuesday's game was the 224th consecutive game played for the 33-year-old defenceman. The last game he missed was January 11, 2003.
"It's obviously disappointing. You want to be in the lineup to help your teammates out," said Staios. "We don't think it's anything serious so we don't expect it to be a long time. It's just not good enough for tonight."
As for the streak, Staios is disappointed to see it come to an end.
"I convinced myself last night that I'd be playing tonight," he said. "I've been asked about the streak and consecutive games but you don't think it's much of a big deal when you're going through it but it's something I took a lot of pride in."
"Hopefully I can start up another streak when I get back."
The injury was a freak occurance as Staios caught a rut in the ice.
"Out playing one-on-one hard and caught a rut, got twisted up," he said. "One of those flukey things that happened."
While Staios has played through injury before during his consecutive-games streak, tonight he feels he doesn't have the leg strength to be effective out there.
"If there was any chance I could do anything out there tonight, I'd be in but there's no chance of me being able to help the team," he said. "We'll see how it is tomorrow again and take it day-by-day. We don't think it's too serious so that's the positive."
The deletion of Staios from the lineup means that Jan Hejda will get back in after not dressing for the past four games.
"I'm not happy about Stevie but I'm happy about (an opportunity to play," said Hejda.
Having been a healthy scratch in all but five games this season, Hejda has played a lot of the waiting game.
"It's my job, I'm waiting for a chance and want to play good. It's tough for me to wait but it's my job."
With an assist and even rating through those five games, Hejda has shown that ability to step in when called upon. He can also eat up minutes with almost 25 minutes of ice-time in a game back on November 8.
Hejda is ready to get back on the ice and make a contribution.
"I feel good today, very good. I'm ready."