SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers stick with Markkanen

ROBIN BROWNLEE -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:51 AM ET

While conventional wisdom suggests that Jussi Markkanen will get a night off early on this trip, that isn't necessarily so.

Markkanen, who made his eighth straight start in beating the Jackets, will get the call against the Red Wings tonight and might also play in St. Louis tomorrow. In fact, MacTavish indicated yesterday he won't hesitate to ride the Finn as long as he's willing to carry the workload.

"My sense right now is we'll continue to go with Jussi for a period of time," MacTavish said.

With Ty Conklin in Hamilton on a conditioning stint, Markkanen is clearly the No. 1 guy. He's played in 11 of 13 games, which sounds like plenty - until MacTavish points out Grant Fuhr played in 75 games with the Oilers during the 1987-88 season.

"Too much emphasis is made on goaltenders being physically tired," MacTavish said. "He's capable of playing. It's more mental than physical."

MORRISON READY: Mike Morrison, summoned from Greenville of the ECHL when Conklin was shipped to Hamilton, has been biding his time and waiting for his first NHL start.

If the 26-year-old stopper from Medford, Massachusetts does get a start on this trip - stops in Dallas Monday or Nashville Sunday seem the likeliest bets - he'll be ready. So will his family back in Boston.

"My family will be ready at home," laughs Morrison. "They have the airlines on speed dial. If it happens, then it happens and, hopefully, they can check it out. The bags are packed and are by the front door."


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