Jeff Skinner has been one of the Carolina Hurricanes best players this year with 14 points in only 13 games. Skinner is playing better than ever before and has been critical to the Hurricanes success this season. Head coach Kirk Muller has released the news that Skinner will not play Monday against the Montreal Canadiens due to an upper-body injury.
In the Hurricanes 3-1 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Skinner was demolished twice into the boards. On the first hit, he slid into the wall head first with speed. Skinner was slow to get up but played the rest of the game. He did not practice with the team today, and he will be evaluated when the team returns on Tuesday.
Unfortunately for the Hurricanes, Skinner has had injury problems before when he missed 16 games last year with a concussion. Most think this was the cause for Skinner’s small sophomore slump. Skinner is one of the Hurricanes best forwards, and if he is out long term it could be devastating for the team.
Skinner has helped the Hurricanes to a commanding 8-4-1 start to lead the Southeast Division. The Hurricanes will look to win four in a row Tuesday when they play the Canadiens who have flourished so far this season. It is likely that Hurricanes forward Chad LaRose will be back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch last game. The Canes will have to battle hard for a win with Tim Gleason and Joni Pitkanen also out with injuries. With two of the Hurricanes top defensemen out, Muller will look for Justin Faulk to play big minutes again after playing 27:45 against Toronto. The team better pray that Skinner does not have another concussion or the Hurricanes will lose one of their best forwards.