SUN Hockey Pool

Peckham pumped about leaving press box

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 6:52 AM ET

Perhaps if Theo Peckham hadn't been here for the past three weeks, the task would be more daunting.

However, considering he has been skating with the team, the Edmonton Oilers defenceman is looking forward to filling in for the injured Ladislav Smid.

"Being here the past little bit, and playing the games that I have played, I'm not saying it's going to be easier, but coming up at the beginning of the season was a lot harder," Peckham said.

"My first two games were against Pittsburgh and Detroit, and that was after not being here; I was just called up."

Peckham has been practising with the Oilers since being recalled from their AHL affiliate in Springfield on March 8.

He's played a total of 10 games with the parent club after having been called up on three separate occasions.

Tonight he'll fill in for Smid, who broke a bone in his left hand on Sunday against the Minnesota Wild. Barring a long playoff run by the Oilers, Smid is done for the season.

"Having been here, you're more used to the speed," Peckham said.

"And watching the games and watching guys like Sheldon (Souray) and Steve (Staios) move the puck, I feel like it's starting to come along for me."

Peckham is drawing into the lineup at the most critical time of the season for the Oilers.

Having dropped to 10th in the Western Conference standings, the team is desperate for wins with six games left on the regular-season schedule.

"I can't really think about that," Peckham said. "I just have to go out there and do the things that got me here in the first place. I have to keep it simple.

"I've only played 10 games, so it's still pretty exciting to jump in there. You can't get too comfortable here, and you can't get complacent.

"That's when your game starts to fall, so you have to stay on edge and take it one game at a time."


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