Monday, 03.12.2012 / 10:33 AM PT
|Koivu will play in his 1,000th tonight in Colorado.
Perry suffered a shoulder injury on a controversial hit into the boards by Stephane Robidas in the second period on Saturday night in Dallas, a 2-0 loss the Ducks could not afford to take. Perry tried on a couple of occasions to get back into the game, but despite x-rays being negative on the shoulder, the pain was too much to bear.
“He’s got a lot of character,” Bruce Boudreau said. “A lot of gumption and a lot of everything else that’s positive. Tried to go twice and just couldn’t go.”
Perry would love to get back in there tonight, but Boudreau said he is doubtful while maintaining that he is "100 times better" than he was on yesterday's off day and a gametime decision for tonight. Perry was not on the ice for the skate this morning, replaced on the top line by recent call-up Kyle Palmieri. Afterward, Perry told reporters he is "50-50" and that there is still enough pain to keep him from shooting the puck since Saturday. If he's not in there tonight, it would break a string of 272 consecutive games for the reigning MVP.
Meanwhile, one Duck guaranteed to be in there tonight will be Saku Koivu, who is playing his 1,000th career game -- a notable feat for a guy whose career was derailed by cancer 10 seasons ago in Montreal. "It means a lot of years in the league and a lot of hours at the rink," he said. "It's a milestone you don't see often. It's a lot of years and a lot of games, and it means a lot to me.
He told the OC Register that his mother, Tuire, sent him congratulatory note on the milestone, but insisted he won't open it until after tonight's game. And he himself knocked on the wooden bench he was sitting on before talking about what 1,000 means to him. "Obviously with the cancer, and not knowing what the future will bring and if I will ever play again, it's been 10 years and I'm still around. So it's a great accomplishment and I'm very proud of that. I'm going to enjoy it tonight."
Koivu will be honored in a special pregame ceremony before Wednesday night's game against the Red Wings at Honda Center.
"For him to battle cancer and come back, the other injuries he's had and to battle back, to reach 1,000 games, it's a pretty incredible number," Boudreau said. "Hats off to him. It says a lot about his tenacity and his desire. That's why he was captain in Montreal.
While the Ducks' playoff hopes are getting slimmer -- eight points back of eighth with 13 to go -- Colorado is making a bit of a charge. The Avs have won seven of their last 10, and their 76 points is tied with Calgary in eighth and the Kings in ninth. The Sharks, meanwhile, as on a stunning slide in which they're 2-6-2 in their last 10, have lost five straight and tumbled to 11th.
Remember, tonight's game is on NBC Sports Network (the former Versus) so look for it there on your guide.