The Arizona Coyotes have lost one of their top players for a while as the team announced that winger Michael Grabner will be out indefinitely after suffering a severe eye injury during the first period of Saturday’s game against St. Louis. The 31-year-old took a stick to the face from the Blues’ Sammy Blais (picture of injury via AZSports Craig Morgan).
Grabner was a key offseason acquisition for the Coyotes who are trying to build up their top-six. The team signed him via free agency to a three-year, $10.05MM deal on the first day of free agency. The winger is coming off two straight 27-goal seasons and is expected to add some much needed scoring depth. Grabner has six goals and 11 points so far this season in 25 games.
One key reason the team brought Grabner in was his ability to play on the penalty kill unit, which has been very successful for Arizona this season as the unit is ranked first with a 89.7 percent kill rate. Grabner himself has a NHL-high four shorthanded goals this season. Richard Morin of AZSports writes the team will recall a player from Tucson, suggesting it might be Laurent Dauphin.