Jordan Staal to Miss Start of 2010-11 Season
The Pittsburgh Penguins received some disappointing news from their medical staff on Thursday, as it was announced that Jordan Staal's lingering right foot injury will keep him out of action through training camp and at least the first few games of the 2010-11 campaign, marking the very first time in Staal's career that he will sit out of regular season action.
The injury, reportedly a torn tendon in his big toe, resulted from an accidental collision with P.K. Subban during Game 1 of Pittsburgh's Eastern Conference Semi-Final series against the Montreal Canadiens. Surgery was performed at the time to repair the tear, causing Staal to miss Game 2 of the series, but he would later return in Game 3 and play out the rest of the series before the Penguins were ultimately eliminated in Game 7. During the off-season, an infection was discovered in the surgically-mended foot, and with the team not in the thick of a gruelling playoff series, you can bet that the franchise will avoid making the same mistake twice by rushing him back into the lineup. With Mike Comrie added to the Penguins' plethora of capable centermen, there is enough depth in the organization to allow Staal to heal completely before returning to gameplay.
Staal's worsening injury status also likely spells the end of any possibility of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin playing together, with Malkin now expected to center the 2nd line until Staal's return, at which point he will slide to the wing on one of the top two lines.