The Dallas Stars had a busy morning, starting with the placement of Alexander Radulov in the COVID protocol. He joins Denis Gurianov and Braden Holtby on the sideline, leaving the team with a few empty holes on the roster. To fill those holes, they’ve recalled Anton Khudobin and Rhett Gardner from the Texas Stars, while also activating Tanner Kero from injured reserve.
It’s been a while now since Radulov was really a dominant force for the Stars but the 35-year-old has reached a new low in terms of importance on the Dallas roster. He has just one goal in 31 games (12 points) and has seen his ice time drop even further in recent days. In fact, since returning to the ice on January 6, he has averaged fewer than 13 minutes and has generated just a single shot on goal through three games. Losing him, while certainly not a positive thing, won’t have the same impact it would have once had.
Jake Oettinger is expected to start tonight for the Stars in Holtby’s place, but the recall is a nice boost for fan-favorite Khudobin, who had been stashed in the minor leagues recently. Through four games for the Texas Stars, the veteran netminder had a 1-3 record with an .898 save percentage. He’ll serve as backup until Holtby is healthy enough to return.
The Stars are in action tonight against the Seattle Kraken before heading to Florida for a back-to-back against the Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning starting Friday. All three of those games are likely to be played without Radulov, should he be facing the usual five-day minimum isolation period. Two members of the team’s support staff have also been placed in the protocol.