Minnesota Wild defenseman and captain Jared Spurgeon won’t be playing in Monday night’s game at Dallas with a lower-body injury.
When his next game is remains a question. The same could be said for the Wild as well.
The scheduled matchup with the Stars will be only the Wild’s second game in the past nine days. Home games with Carolina and Florida were postponed last week due to both teams dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. And Thursday’s scheduled matchup with Detroit at the Xcel Energy Center was also postponed for the same reason.
Minnesota’s only game last week was a 3-2 shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday and Spurgeon left the game one shift into the third period. The thought is he reaggravated a lower-body injury that had kept him out the lineup for eight games and was one that he had recently returned from.
When asked about Spurgeon during a media availability session on Sunday,, Wild coach Dean Evason said he did not feel it was an injury that would require surgery.
Evason was asked about the team’s depth and experience on defense with players like Jordie Benn who can step in.
“I completely agree,” Evason said. (Benn) is obviously a guy we will rely on and have full confidence in to step in and provide us exactly what he did when he came in last time . He is a pro and we really like his communication as much as his play. He’s very open, very talkative. A good leader back there for us.”
Minnesota beat the Stars 7-2 on Nov. 18 at the Xcel Energy Center in the first matchup of the season between the two teams.
The Wild’s next schedule game is Dec. 27 in Winnipeg but on Sunday the NHL announced that travel for games between teams based in the United States and Canada would be halted at least through Dec. 23 due to COVID-19 issues. There is also the question NHL players will compete in the Winter Olympics in February.
“There’s a lot of ifs, that’s the biggest thing,” Wild forward Marcus Foligno said of the COVID-19 issues in the league., including day-to-day protocols. “It’s kind of tough to have an answer for everything and the (player’s association) is doing the best they can in talking to the league and going back-and-forth. Wejust have to do our part (as players) and try and stay healthy, especially us and St. Louis (for the Winter Classic).”
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The Wild vs. Stars odds on WynnBET has Dallas as a 1.5 goal favorite at home. The Stars are also listed as -112 favorites on the moneyline with the Wild being underdog at +102 The total goals is set at an over/under of 5.5
Upcoming Wild schedule
Thursday, Dec. 23: Detroit, ppd.
Monday, Dec. 27: @Winnipeg, 8 p.m., CST
Sat, Jan 1: St. Louis, 6 p.m. CST (Winter Classic)