Smid returns from injury

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:30 AM ET

A pain in the neck is better than a concussion.

And after a few disconcerting days on the sidelines, Ladislav Smid believes that's all his recent injury ever was.

"I feel the headaches were from my neck," said the Oilers defenceman, who returned to the lineup against St. Louis last night after missing Edmonton's previous game and two subsequent practices with headaches following a big hit against Atlanta (which followed a nasty elbow to the head March 7 in Toronto).

TREATMENTS

"I've had lots of treatments and they've really helped me," Smid said.

"It was getting better and better every day, and this morning there was no headache."

Because he suffered a concussion after a Raffi Torres elbow in November, Smid and the Oilers wanted to be especially cautious after his head started bothering him after the Atlanta game.

"We were just waiting until I was headache-free because I had a concussion already this season, that was the biggest concern," he said, adding neck therapy took care of the head problem right away.

"Now I feel headache-free; just my neck is a little bit sore. I can live with that.

"I had X-rays and everything, my bones are OK, just some muscle spasms."

RELIEVED

And he's relieved it wasn't anything more serious.

"I'm a young guy, two concussions in one year wouldn't be good.

"My neck is going to be sore for a couple of weeks, but my biggest concern was about my head, and it's OK."

The scare has made him take another look at how he looks after himself out there, though.

"I have to be smarter," he said.

"The last few games I've taken big hits. It's kind of stupid. I have to protect myself a little more, play smarter."


Videos

Photos