Oilers' Hemsky back skating
DEREK VAN DIEST, QMI Agency
|Edmonton Oilers forward Ales Hemsky has returned to the ice. (Jordan Verlage/QMI AGENCY)
Ales Hemsky couldn’t pinpoint one specific incident.
The Edmonton Oilers winger didn’t take a big hit forcing him to miss the previous two weeks due to concussion symptoms.
It was a series of little shots that led to him getting knocked out of the lineup.
“I got a puck in the neck in Vancouver,” said Hemsky. “Then in San Jose, I got hit in the nose, which I felt pretty good. The next morning, I didn’t feel great, but the next day I felt OK and I went on to play the next two games.
“However I wasn’t into it, I didn’t feel very good. Then the next day I came in and told them that I had some issues, but I had a cold, too, so I thought maybe it was the cold. Then against Minnesota, I realized that it was probably a concussion and they pulled me out.”
Hemsky has been out of the lineup since getting the hook against the Wild on Jan. 18. Due to the All-star break, the Oilers winger has just missed four games in his two-week absence.
He’s expected to be back in the lineup on Wednesday when the Oilers host the Los Angeles Kings.
“I skated a couple of times before the break and I’ve had a couple of practices after the break,” Hemsky said. “It’s been pretty good. I was cleared to practice and I felt pretty good and I think I’m ready to jump in, but it’s up to Tom (Renney) and we’ll see what happens.”
Hemsky is currently tied for third in team scoring with 29 points, despite having missed 17 games already this season.
Earlier in the year Hemsky suffered a groin injury that kept him out of the lineup for an extended period.
“I think Ales is ready to play, I think he had a really good skate (Tuesday) and he did really well on the test I gave him,” Renney said. “I think we’ll play him. You have to trust your athlete in a situation like this and he feels that he’s ready.”
Having returned too soon from a groin injury earlier this season, Hemsky wanted to make sure he was completely healthy before coming back this time.
“The last time I played with an injury and I probably shouldn’t have,” Hemsky said. “That’s why I went to miss four weeks.
“I just have to be more careful with those things. If it’s your shoulder or your knee, it’s one thing, but if it’s your head, that’s different. There is nothing you can take to make you better, there are no pills you can take, you just have to be careful with something like this.”