Prior to the injury, the Hurricanes' captain had played in 191 consecutive games since Feb. 26, 2011. He has missed just 15 games because of injury in 10 NHL seasons, including 10 in 2009-10.
"I'm feeling good now, and it's getting better," Staal told reporters. "I would be completely ineffective if I would have stayed trying to get it done. I tried. A huge part of my game is skating and using my power, speed and size. With what I had going on, I wasn't able to do that.