February 24, 2009 10:40 AM
Stastny will play tonight
Avalanche center Paul Stastny has been cleared to suit up for tonight's game in Atlanta.
Coach Tony Granato said Stastny, who has missed 26 games to recover from surgery for a fractured forearm, would skate between Ryan Smyth and rookie Chris Stewart.
Wojtek Wolski, who has been centering the top line in Stastny's absence, will skate with Cody McLeod and Milan Hejduk.
"I'm excited," Stastny said today. "It's been tough watching the team play for seven weeks. Whatever I can do to help out, I'll be doing tonight. I'm hoping to be a spark for this team."
The Avalanche went 11-15-0 without Stastny.
The Avalanche couldn't skate this morning because Philips Arena workers were still preparing the ice for tonight's game. The ice was taken out for a circus while the Atlanta Thrashers were on a four-game trip to the West Coast.
A number of players rode stationary bikes and some others played soccer in a hallway.