Injury Ward: Kuemper, Rantanen, Grubauer, Hronek, Couture, DeAngelo, Boeser, & Shesterkin
Here's this week's latest in the injury world. If you don't see a certain player below, there probably haven't been any major developments in their progress. Once there is a significant update, I'll be sure to have it for you on Twitter @BrennanDeSouza!
Ondrej Kase – He sat out of a game against the Sabres on February 9th due to an illness. He proceeded to miss the team's next four games and we haven't been given much of an update since that original 'illness' diagnosis. He was not on the ice for Wednesday morning's skate, so I don't expect he'll be in the lineup against the Panthers.
Darcy Kuemper – He was on the ice for Tuesday's practice but there's still no timeline for his return. You'll recall that Kuemper was initially expected to be in the lineup on February 10th against the Canadiens, but suffered a setback the morning before the game. Fortunately, further examination revealed that the setback was not a major one. Antti Raanta has been playing very well recently, he sports a 1.85 GAA and .943 save percentage in February – a span of seven games.
Linus Ullmark – He recently got back on the ice for the first time since suffering a lower-body injury. We're three weeks into the original three to four-week timetable, so he's probably about a week away from a return.
Mark Giordano – While he hasn't skated since suffering a hamstring injury two weeks ago, he has been working out off the ice. It's encouraging to hear that he's been ramping up his workouts recently as the healing process is going extremely well. The team will provide another update on Giordano's status at some point in the coming days.
Mikko Rantanen – Appeared to injure his shoulder during Monday's game against the Lightning, after he was tripped and sent into the boards awkwardly. The official word from Colorado is that he'll miss weeks with an upper-body injury. From a fantasy hockey perspective, Andre Burakovsky could see an increased role over the next few weeks. Rantanen missed about a month of action earlier this season due to a leg injury, Burakovsky tallied 13 points in 15 games during his absence.
Philipp Grubauer – Left Saturday's game against the Kings after colliding with teammate Ian Cole and taking some contact in the upper-body area. He reportedly suffered a lower-body injury on the play and is currently being evaluated. At this point, there's no timeline for this return but the team should know more in the coming days. Pavel Francouz should take over the starting role in Grubauer's absence, he has a 13-5-3 record, alongside a 2.51 GAA and .922 save percentage.
Joonas Korpisalo – Was on the ice for morning skate on Tuesday, his first time skating with the team since suffering a knee injury in late December. Korpisalo has been assigned to the Cleveland Monsters (Columbus' AHL affiliate) for a conditioning stint. Considering his last NHL game was played seven weeks ago, he might need a couple of starts in the AHL to get back in shape. It's worth mentioning that an AHL conditioning assignment cannot last more than 14 days, so Korpisalo should be back with the Blue Jackets pretty soon. It sounds like he's getting close to a return, but I wouldn't jump to add him to my fantasy roster. Remember, Seth Jones will be sidelined for the next couple of months. Columbus' defense is a lot weaker without Jones in the lineup.
Alexander Radulov – An upper-body injury kept him out of the lineup for the past three games. Fortunately, he was on the ice for Tuesday's practice and didn't show any signs of pain or discomfort. While he's officially a game-time decision for Wednesday's game against the Coyotes, it seems more likely than not that he'll make his return.
Filip Hronek – Left Sunday's game against the Penguins after taking a puck to the head. He sat out of Tuesday's game against the Canadiens and is officially day-to-day. The 22-year-old defenseman has put up an impressive 29 points in 59 games this year.
Oskar Klefbom – Will be sidelined for the next two to three weeks as he recovers from a shoulder injury. He had a minor procedure on his shoulder, to treat an injury that he had been playing through. In his absence, it looks like Darnell Nurse will take over Edmonton's top power-play unit. As Dobber reminded us, Nurse had 17 points in 21 and a half games while Klefbom was injured last year.
Connor McDavid – He received treatment at the rink on Wednesday, but didn't skate. Coach Dave Tippett did not have any news about when McDavid was expected to get back on the ice. We still have another week or two left in the original prognosis for his quad injury, so there's no need to panic. The Oilers have won three of four games in McDavid's absence, thanks in large part to Leon Draisaitl, who has ten points in those four games.
James Neal – Has had a few setbacks in his recovery from a foot injury and is expected to miss another couple of weeks. The injury has already kept him out of the lineup for a few weeks as he last played on January 29th.
Brendan Gallagher – He has been skating recently and travelled with the team to Detroit, but was ultimately held out of the lineup against the Red Wings on Tuesday due to a lower-body injury. It sounds like he's feeling good and could be available for Thursday's game against the Capitals.
Ryan Ellis – Has been skating recently as he recovers from an upper-body injury but it doesn't sound like he's close to returning just yet. The team will continue to monitor his status each day as he works his way back into the lineup.
Sami Vatanen – Last we heard, he wasn't skating and his recovery from a bruised leg was taking longer than originally anticipated. The Devils had a day off on Wednesday, so we'll have to wait until Thursday to hear more about Vatanen's status.
Tony DeAngelo – Was on the ice for Wednesday morning's skate. While he ultimately didn't play against the Bruins on Sunday, he was very close to a return. Now that he has another couple of days to rest, I'd expect him to return to the lineup against the Blackhawks on Wednesday night.
Igor Shesterkin – Has been practicing recently and was the first goalie off the ice during Wednesday morning's skate, which is usually an indicator of who's starting in the evening. Expect him to face the Blackhawks on Wednesday night.
Mark Borowiecki – A high ankle injury will keep him sidelined for at least a week and there's no timetable for his return. He's been a multi-category beast this year, sitting in the league's top-10 for both hits and blocks.
Shayne Gostisbehere – Has been skating recently and while he's feeling a lot better, it's unlikely he returns to the lineup on Thursday. It's possible he'll be available on Saturday when the Flyers host the Jets.
Nolan Patrick – Has been practicing with the team recently and still expects to play this season. While he is definitely feeling better, he hasn't yet been cleared for contact and isn't necessarily close to a return. Once he gets sent down to the AHL for a conditioning stint, we can start expecting him back in the lineup.
Evgeni Malkin – Missed Tuesday's game against the Leafs because he was sick. He also missed Wednesday's practice but his status for Thursday's tilt in Toronto hasn't yet been determined. Illnesses don't usually keep players out for more than a game or two, so don't expect Malkin to be sidelined for too long.
Logan Couture – Will join the team as they visit the Devils on Thursday, Rangers on Saturday, Islanders on Sunday and Flyers on Tuesday. However, he won't play in any of those four games. Coach Bob Boughner said Couture might join the team for a few morning skates during the road trip and will try to practice on Monday. There's an outside chance that Couture is ready to get back in the lineup when the Sharks return home to host the Devils on February 27th. A fractured ankle has kept him out of the lineup since early-January.
Erik Karlsson – Will be sidelined for the rest of the season as he recovers from surgery to repair a broken thumb. The 29-year-old defenseman was scoring at a 59-point-pace this year – his lowest scoring pace since his sophomore season back in 2010-2011.
Morgan Rielly – He should be able to put weight on his foot in the coming days, after breaking it about five weeks ago. Initial reports indicated he'd miss a minimum of eight weeks as a result of the injury and it appears he's aiming for a return in late-Match – which would result in a total recovery time of nine to ten weeks.
Brock Boeser – He's dealing with a rib cartilage fracture and will be re-evaluated in three weeks. With that being said, GM Jim Benning mentioned that the injury comes with a recovery timeline of approximately eight weeks. It's been about a week and a half since Boeser suffered the injury, so he'll probably be out for another six and a half weeks. Essentially, Boeser would be expected to return at some point in early April and there is a chance he's done for the rest of the regular season. It might be time to drop Boeser in one-year fantasy leagues.
Alex Tuch – Is week-to-week with a leg injury. It's been a disappointing season for Tuch, who has just 17 points in 42 games after putting up 52 points in 74 games last year. He went from averaging nearly 17 minutes of ice time last season, to just 14 and a half minutes this year. He's still just 23 years old, so I believe his best years are still ahead of him.
William Karlsson – Okay, before you start panicking, he has not suffered another injury and should still be in the lineup against the Lightning on Thursday. I just wanted to let you know that he still can't grip his stick properly since returning from a broken finger and it'll probably be another week before his finger fully heals. He does have three points in four games since returning, but given this information, I wouldn't blame you for benching him for the next few games.
No data at this moment.