Work in Sports
'I have to be patient'
Foote practices but still not cleared to play
Posted: Saturday May 20, 2000 07:38 PM
DENVER (AP) -- Colorado Avalanche defenseman Adam Foote, eager to get back into action following an eye injury, practiced Saturday but awaited medical clearance to resume playing.
His right eye still bloodshot and the skin around his eye discolored, Foote wore a half-length plastic face shield during the workout, as opposed to the full-length shield he wore during a skate-around Friday morning.
Foote, Colorado's toughest defenseman, sustained what the club called "blunt trauma" to his eye when he was hit by Jere Lehtinen's stick in Game 2 of the Dallas-Colorado series Monday night. He missed Game 3 on Friday night.
Foote was to be evaluated by an ophthalmologist daily.
"They're going to let me play when they feel I'm 100 percent," he said. "The doctors aren't going to let me out there if they feel I can reinjure or aggravate it. So I have to be patient."
Foote, however, was finding that difficult.
"I feel great," he said. "Today was a good skate for me. I want to play. I wanted to play last night. I felt I could have played four days ago."
He said wearing the shield wasn't a problem, although some players complain that it affects their vision.
"I've played with one before, about five or six years ago," he said. "The visor is not going to bother me."
Colorado coach Bob Hartley said the club's medical staff "will make the final decision. Footie wanted to play last night. Knowing him, he wants to play every game. But we have to do what's best for him. When dealing with an eye injury, there's no sense taking any chances.
"We feel very confident that he is going to be in the lineup at some point in this series, but for [Sunday] we still don't know."