The Minnesota Wild activated defenseman Jared Spurgeon today off of injured reserve and is expected to play tonight against the Chicago Blackhawks, according to Michael Russo of The Athletic (subscription required). Spurgeon had been rumored to be returning after having missed nine games with a groin injury. The team had already sent defenseman Ryan Murphy back to Iowa yesterday to make room for Spurgeon.
The 28-year-old blueliner has three goals and 12 assists in 23 games this year. He is not expected to rejoin partner Ryan Suter right away, however. Mathew Dumba filled in for Spurgeon while he was out and the combination of Suter and Dumba has worked well for the Wild as Dumba’s play has improved since the change.
- The New Jersey Devils are closing in on being fully healthy, according to northjersey.com’s Andrew Gross. Both Taylor Hall and Kyle Palmieri are expected to play in Monday’s game against the Anaheim Ducks. Hall has missed the past two games with a knee contusion, while Palmieri will be activated off of injured reserve after missing 12 games with a broken right foot. There is also a possibility, although Gross said it’s slim, that winger Marcus Johansson could also play Monday after missing three games with an ankle bruise. If not, then he will be expected to return on Thursday against the New York Rangers. All three players practiced Sunday.
- Toronto Maple Leafs star Auston Matthews (possible concussion) is starting to slowly work his way back. The 20-year-old center skated for 20 minutes Sunday, but did not practice with the team, according to TSN’s Kristen Shilton. She added that coach Mike Babcock is not sure when he’ll be able to play, but added there are no plans to shut him down for a stretch either.
- The Athletic’s Kevin Kurz tweets that San Jose Sharks leading scorer Logan Couture will miss Monday’s game against Edmonton at minimum after sustaining a head injury in Friday’s game against Vancouver. The Mercury News’ Paul Gackle tweets that head coach Peter DeBoer confirmed Couture suffered a concussion and remains day-to-day. In a separate story, Gackle writes the team will be in trouble if Couture injury keeps him out of the lineup for an extended period of time.
- NHL.com’s Jourdon LaBarber writes that Buffalo Sabres center Jacob Josefson practiced today with the team and hopes to be ready to play soon after missing 24 games with an ankle injury. Josefson did attempt to come back on Nov. 22 and played two games before re-injuring his ankle. The 26-year-old has only managed to play in nine games for Buffalo after signing a one-year, $700K deal in the offseason. Coach Phil Housley said he will be re-evaluated on Monday. Josefson has one goal and one assist in the nine games he’s played in.
- Boston Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid might be ready as soon as Monday from a broken fibula he suffered on Oct. 19, according to NHL.com’s Michael Tolvo. The veteran has missed 24 games since then. “I don’t know if Monday he’ll be cleared, but he is close,” added head coach Bruce Cassidy. “He is getting close. He has practiced with us, so it is imminent for him. I just don’t want to pinpoint an exact date.”