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Eric Staal (lower body) is out a few more games

Jan 9, 2014, 8:57 AM EDT

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RALEIGH, NC - DECEMBER 27: Eric Staal #12 of the Carolina Hurricanes skates with the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins at PNC Arena on December 27, 2013 in Raleigh, North Carolina. The Penguins defeated the Hurricanes 4-3. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Hurricanes are riding a four-game winning streak, but if they want to keep that momentum going, they are going to have do so without captain Eric Staal.

Carolina coach Kirk Muller predicted that Staal would be out for a few more contests due to a lower-body injury. The 29-year-old forward wasn’t available on Sunday and would have missed Tuesday’s game against Buffalo as well had it not been postponed due to “hazardous weather conditions”.

“I need to make sure it’s not an issue in the second half of the season,” Staal said.

The good news is that he has been making progress and is still optimistic that he’ll return sooner rather than later.

Carolina will play against Toronto on Thursday, Columbus on Friday, and Calgary on Monday. After that, they have a five day break before they host the Florida Panthers on Jan. 18.

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