The Minnesota Wild will remain without captain Jared Spurgeon in the lineup for at least the next two games, GM Bill Guerin told the media today (via Joe Smith of The Athletic). At the earliest, Spurgeon could make his season debut on Sunday against the Dallas Stars, which Guerin dubbed a “possibility.”
Spurgeon has been sidelined for all 12 games this season due to an upper-body injury sustained during training camp, a figure that will stretch to at least 14 before he joins the team for game action. His absence has been a back-breaker for a team that’s played uncharacteristically poor defensively so far, allowing 49 goals through 12 games – the most in the Central Division and second-most in the Western Conference, behind only the lowly San Jose Sharks. On the bright side, Spurgeon’s absence has meant an opportunity for 21-year-old rookie Brock Faber, who’s assumed top-pairing duties without a second thought and has registered five points and a +7 rating in nearly 24 minutes per game of ice time.
Elsewhere in the Western Conference tonight:
- The Arizona Coyotes are set to be without the services of defenseman Travis Dermott for an undisclosed amount of time, per Craig Morgan of PHNX Sports. Dermott sustained an undisclosed injury in Tuesday’s shootout win over the Seattle Kraken, spurring the recall of Michael Kesselring from AHL Tucson earlier today. Dermott, 26, is in his first season as a Coyote and already missed a pair of contests earlier this year due to illness. He’s notched one assist through ten games and posted positive defensive metrics relative to his partner, Matt Dumba, who’s profiled analytically as the Coyotes’ worst defender so far this season.
- San Jose Sharks defenseman Jacob MacDonald was placed on injured reserve earlier today in a corresponding transaction to the acquisition of Calen Addison from the Minnesota Wild, and head coach David Quinn confirmed today that he’ll miss the minimum one week required to be on IR but not necessarily much more. Injuries have limited MacDonald to just two appearances this season, but he did log a two-point effort in the team’s 10-2 blowout at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins recently. In fact, MacDonald has only suited up in the Sharks’ back-to-back 10-goal concessions, recording a -5 rating and averaging just north of 12 minutes per game.