Advertisement

Carolina Hurricanes' Jordan Staal returns to first practice since December

By Connor Grott
Carolina Hurricanes' Jordan Staal returns to first practice since December
Carolina Hurricanes center Jordan Staal (11) returned to practice Thursday and is nearing a return to the lineup. File Photo by Robert Cornforth/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Carolina Hurricanes veteran forward Jordan Staal returned to practice Thursday after a long absence, the team announced.

Staal practiced with the team for the first time since December and could return to Carolina's lineup soon. He wore a yellow non-contact jersey during the practice session.

Advertisement

"Seeing him out there for the first time in a long time was great," Hurricanes head coach Rod Brind'Amour told the team's official website. "We've missed him, but we've managed to hang around. Hopefully we get him back soon because we need him."

Staal suffered a concussion against the San Jose Sharks on Dec. 5 and sat out the Hurricanes' next three contests. The 30-year-old center returned for games against the Detroit Red Wings on Dec. 20 and the Pittsburgh Penguins on Dec. 22 before being sidelined indefinitely.

RELATED Bruce Boudreau: Minnesota Wild 'are going to make the playoffs'

Staal has 11 points (five goals, six assists) in 29 games this season.

"In the end, it's obviously about feeling good and feeling back to yourself. I feel like I've hit that point," Staal said. "In the last two weeks, I've been feeling a lot better, having energy throughout the day and building off that. As of late, I've been able to push with no setbacks."

Advertisement

Carolina (29-22-6) has a 15-7-1 record without Staal in the lineup this year, the second-best mark in the league during that span. Staal has 493 points (211 goals, 282 assists) in 872 career NHL games.

RELATED 'Mighty Ducks' cast members drop puck at Anaheim Ducks game

The Hurricanes play the Edmonton Oilers on Friday at PNC Arena. Carolina is three points behind the Penguins for the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.

RELATED Anaheim Ducks goalie John Gibson placed on injured reserve

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement