Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 12/10/13
When Jesse Joensuu reluctantly left the Edmonton Oilers lineup with a back issue that kept him out for 11 games, he knew he was doomed to lose some ground. But here it is one month later, and the big winger is still struggling to find a way to be an effective player — no matter how many minutes he plays. Joensuu, a healthy scratch the last two games, will likely draw back into the lineup Tuesday when the Carolina Hurricanes report to Rexall Place. “There have been games where I felt like I was playing hockey but other games where it’s been a grind,” he said after practice on Monday. “The game hasn’t come naturally, and in that situation, it’s good to get out of the lineup — even though it’s always a punch in the face. “The first two games (back from the injury) I didn’t play good because I was tentative, but after that, it’s just been a battle with the ice time. It’s not that I’m sitting here crying, saying that I can’t play with small amounts of ice time, but if you play more, it’s easy to get into situations. “When you don’t play a lot, you just try and avoid making mistakes — and that’s not how anybody wants to play. “I just need to play more offensive, just try and play like I did before,” Joensuu continued. “When you play six, seven minutes, you’re not going out to score goals or make chances, you’re doing something else, and I don’t feel like I’m at my best at that.” Joensuu, a free-agent signing who had played 67 games over the course of four seasons with the New York Islanders, looked like he might be an effective addition with his work in the pre-season. He was a physical presence and he was producing points. In the season opener against the Winnipeg Jets, he was not only playing with Boyd Gordon and Nail Yakupov, he was on the power play — and he responded with a goal in his first regular season game with the Oilers. A few more games in and he was sidelined with a torn back muscle.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Seahawks players feel Sherman bombshell story ‘nailed it’

Turkey: Kanter a member of terrorist group, issues warrant

Chad Johnson says Roger Goodell consulted him on touchdown celebration rule change

Kevin Durant is not to blame for the NBA’s lack of parity, and he knows it

Khloe Kardashian called out Cavs fan who mentioned ‘curse’

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Warriors’ Mike Brown: Steve Kerr may be back for the Finals

Dodgers transfer Andrew Toles and Scott Kazmir to the 60-day disabled list

Looking back at 40 years of women racing in the Indianapolis 500

U.S. national soccer teams to wear LGBT-themed jerseys to celebrate pride month

Mike Zimmer: Teddy Bridgewater still has ‘long ways to go’

Report: Clippers concerned about Chris Paul leaving to sign with Spurs

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Box Score 5/26: Bring on the Finals

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker