Brind'Amour OK, back at practice
May 17, 2009
Rod Brind'Amour may be sporting a shiny new black eye, but it's not enough to keep him out of practice.
The Hurricanes Captain skated Sunday in preparation for the opening game of Carolina's Eastern Conference finals showdown with Pittsburgh.
Brind'Amour took a puck to the face late during the Canes' Game 7 win over Boston and did not return for the overtime period, but says he feels fine now.
That's no suprise to his coach. Paul Maurice has grown accustomed to Brind'Amour's tendency to play with pain.
"I just remember watching him limp out of the room his first year and finding out later he'd been playing on a broken foot for six weeks," Maurice said. "And he just didn't bother telling anybody because it 'wasn't that bad.'"
Brind'Amour has seen his minutes dwindle during the post-season after being relegated to fourth-line duty. But his presence on that line gives the Canes balance, and his defensive presence will be needed in the Penguins series.
Pittsburgh tends to double-shift stars Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal, giving them time on the fourth line, so Brind'Amour will be going toe-to-toe with several of the game's top players.