"He's very calm with the puck and makes good decisions -- nice and simple. Playing with him is very easy. It is always nice having him in there in a little bit of a leadership role and he's so good on the penalty kill." -- Jeff Schultz on fellow defenseman Tom Poti
knew their injuries would keep them out of the 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic well in advance of the event at Pittsburgh's Heinz Field on New Year's Day.
had to wait to see if the symptoms from a concussion he suffered in his team's meeting with the
nine days prior to the Winter Classic would subside in time for him to play. The ability to hope ended up making it more difficult when the final decision to skip the game had to be made.
"It was pretty close. I was waking up every day and hoping I would feel a little bit better and be able to play," Poti said. "It was just a tough situation. We knew the conditions with the ice weren't going to be great, so I think it was a smarter move not to play, obviously. It was very hard to watch, but it was the smart thing to do.