TORONTO - Ales Hemsky might have been making just a cameo appearance on the road trip when he potted a goal and two assists Wednesday in Montreal.
After limping to the dressing room from the training table long after his game back after missing three with a sore groin, he listed himself as questionable for Thursday in Toronto.
The status has been downgraded to doubtful after it didn’t show any improvement overnight.
“At this point in time, I would say Ales is doubtful,” said Oilers’ coach Tom Renney, whose club is looking to go 3-0 on the trip after wins in Ottawa and Montreal. “We’ve got to protect our athletes, it’s a long season, there’s a lot of work to do, I’ll be prudent with him.”
Netminder Nikolai Khabibulin, meanwhile, is playing, He’ll make his first start since Nov 17 after being sidelined with an injury similar to Hemsky’s.
“Looking forward to seeing him, I think our guys love it when he’s in net,” said Renney. “With the way our goaltending’s been, he’ll give us as much a chance to win as anybody.”
Another day, another big stop. This time The Air Canada Centre in Toronto.
“I think they’ll handle it well," said Renney. "As they did in the Bell Centre.”