SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers goalie Morrison rebounds

ROBIN BROWNLEE -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 9:33 AM ET

SAN JOSE -- Mike Morrison had to wait exactly a month between his last appearance with the Edmonton Oilers and last night's start against the San Jose Sharks. It's not a tap on the shoulder he took for granted.

"It's the first time I ever experienced something like that at this level," Morrison said of being sent to the minors in December and waiting for another chance to prove himself.

"It was hard. Obviously, I'm confident in myself and I want to do good for myself, but when stuff like that happens, you feel like you let your team down."

Morrison, 26, was back between the pipes last night for the first time since Dec. 19, when he gave up three goals on 10 shots before being pulled in a 5-4 win over the Calgary Flames.

That hook came on the heels of him being pulled early in a 5-4 overtime win over the Vancouver Canucks after allowing two goals on four shots two nights earlier.

Those appearances sent what had been a stellar season sideways and eventually put Morrison in the minors with Greenville of the ECHL on a conditioning stint while Ty Conklin and Jussi Markkanen took over.

"Kevin Lowe and Craig (MacTavish) treated me with such respect," said Morrison.

"They knew I was hurting. They talked to me and helped me through it.

"They just said, 'Hey, just keep smiling. You've done great things for us and we remember that.'

"To hear guys like that say that when they don't have to, it was a real tribute to them. You have to learn how to deal with it."


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