As ironman streaks go, Colin Miller’s wasn’t the longest or all that much to brag about, really.
This is nowhere near Andrew Cogliano territory or anything like that.
Yet, the defenseman’s absence from the Golden Knights’ 4-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday at T-Mobile Arena was significant nonetheless.
Miller was one of two players for the Knights, along with center William Karlsson, to have played in every regular-season game in franchise history.
“When you play a full 82-game schedule the way the NHL is today — big, strong guys — it’s a lot of luck and it’s a lot of making sure you’re in good shape and good condition. I think Colin does that,” coach Gerard Gallant said. “He works out hard and a lot of it has to do with luck, too, because when you play in the NHL an 82-game schedule, a lot of the travel like we had, if you can play all 82 games that says something about you.”
Miller played in 119 straight games from April 8, 2017, to Dec. 17, 2018, and all but one came with the Knights. He also played in all 20 postseason games during the Knights’ run to the Stanley Cup Final.
His regular-season streak was the 48th longest in the league, well behind active leader Keith Yandle of Florida (747 games), second-place Patrick Marleau of Toronto (740 games) and No. 3 Phil Kessel of Pittsburgh (726 games).
Anaheim’s Cogliano was suspended two games in January to halt his run of 830 straight games played, which was fourth all time behind Doug Jarvis (964), Garry Unger (914) and Steve Larmer (884).
Miller was hurt during the second period of the Knights’ 1-0 loss at Columbus on Monday. He didn’t take a shift for the final 6:14 of the second and returned with 13:50 remaining in the third period, according to the official NHL play-by-play.
The team said Miller is day to day with an undisclosed injury.
He was replaced against the Islanders by Brad Hunt, who paired with Nick Holden.
In 36 games, Miller has two goals and 15 assists. He finished with 10 goals and 31 assists in 82 games in his first season with the Knights.
Karlsson’s consecutive games streak started March 2, 2017, with Columbus, and he has played in 140 straight overall, including 119 with the Knights. That is the 35th longest active streak in the league.
“There’s a lot of things that can go wrong. You could get hit, or you can get hit by a puck or whatever. Or you could get sick,” Karlsson said. “And you’ve got to play good, too, right? If you don’t play good, someone else is going to take your spot. That plays in, too.
“There’s a lot of things that could make you stay out. Me, I’ve been fortunate enough since I got here to be in the lineup.”
Karlsson tallied his team-high 14th goal at 6:22 of the third period to tie the game 2-2, and Paul Stastny scored 1:03 later to help the Knights earn their sixth straight and ninth in the past 10 at T-Mobile Arena.
The Knights rallied with four unanswered goals after New York scored twice in the final 1:30 of the first period.
“We showed a lot of character,” goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury said. “I don’t think I saw many pucks in that second (period) and we dominated, got a big goal and kept coming at them.”