Defenseman Marc Staal, in his first interview since he was struck in the eye by a deflected puck on March 5, has started skating wearing a visor and hopes to be back "as soon as possible" but has no timeline.
"It feels pretty good to start working out and training again. This is my second day on the ice, I'm sore but feel good."
On the visor: "There's a little difference, when I start sweating and working hard, it bothers me a bit, but I don’t forsee any problems....When I was hit and on the ice, one of the things that went through my mind was, 'I should have been wearing a visor." He said if they were "grandfathered in", he'd vote for it.
The healing process: "The fractures are good, it's been three or four weeks, so they feel fine, the vision’s not 100 percent yet, the pupil’s still a little more dilated than the other one; every week it’s gotten better, so we hope it keeps on healing and we’ll go from there."
"The first week was pretty scary, I don’t think my wife slept the first four nights, wiping blood off my eye and face, she’s been huge for me, my parents and brothers, it’s amazing how small the hockey world is, how many people reach out and wish you well, all the information you get from those people is great."
On playing before his eyesight is 100 percent: "It’s a bit of an adjustment, there are a lot of guys out there that play without perfect vision in one eye, it’s just going to be one of those things where you’re out there, letting your more powerful eye take over."
More in a bit...