Michael Russo of The Athletic tweeted this morning that Minnesota Wild winger Kirill Kaprizov was absent from practice and was replaced in the line rushes by Nic Petan. The Wild are calling it a maintenance day for the 26-year-old as he is banged up at the moment. Kaprizov had an assist in the Wild’s 8-3 drubbing at the hands of the Dallas Stars on Saturday night but played just 16:49, which is a dramatic decrease from the 21:21 in ice time he has been averaging this season.
Kaprizov does have five goals and 10 assists in 15 games this season, but his play has seemed off despite the offensive success. He is -11, and while that number can be misleading, his turnover numbers are not. Kaprizov has turned the puck over in almost every game this season, far outpacing his previous career numbers. He also appears to be struggling when he is deployed against other team’s top star players.
In other afternoon notes:
- The Arizona Coyotes have announced today that they’ve placed forward Jack McBain on injured reserve and in a corresponding move they’ve recalled forward Milos Kelemen from their AHL affiliate the Tucson Roadrunners. The 24-year-old is looking to get into the Coyotes lineup for the first time this season after dressing in 14 games last year. The native of Svolen, Slovakia registered a single goal in the NHL last season but was much more productive in his first AHL season posting 14 goals and 16 assists in 59 games with the Roadrunners. This year, Kelemen is posting offense at about the same pace with two goals and four assists through his first 11 games. Kelemen struggled under poor possession numbers and defensive zone starts in his first run with the Coyotes and will be looking to show he belongs in the NHL if he gets back into the Coyotes lineup.
- TSN’s Mark Masters is reporting that Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Conor Timmins practiced this morning in a normal jersey for the first time since September. The 25-year-old has yet to dress for the Maple Leafs this season after being sidelined with a lower-body injury during what was an impressive preseason as he collected six points in three preseason games and made a case for himself to be in Toronto’s top six. Last season the St. Catherines, Ontario native posted two goals and 12 assists in 27 NHL games.