Joffrey Lupul could miss training camp, beginning of season due to back infection

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lupulscores.jpgMost injury reports are fairly mundane. They’re generally full of tweaks and scopes and strains and tears.

Every once and a while, though, you stumble on an ailment that sounds downright scary. Take, for instance, the case of Joffrey Lupul. News broke that the goal scoring winger will miss the opening of training camp and might not be ready for the beginning of the regular season due to the return of a blood infection in his back, according to the Orange County Register.

Lupul said Monday he suffered the setback one month ago and stopped training because of the discomfort. Results from blood tests showed that the infection had returned, according to the team.

Lupul will continue to take antibiotics for another four weeks and cannot do any physical activity during that time. He will be re-evaluated on or around Sept.20, about two or three days after the Ducks open camp.

Lupul said that being ready for the Ducks’ season opener on Oct.8 is not a possibility. There is no timetable for his return.

“It’s really frustrating,” Lupul said. “I haven’t played hockey in a long time. I was hoping to be ready on day one of camp. But now my focus has changed. I want to get rid of this. I’m very confident I can get back playing and playing well.”

Oof, that’s rough, folks.

After becoming one of the only players in sports I’ve ever heard of who was packaged in two trades for the same player (he was thrown in the other side of two deals involving all-world defenseman Chris Pronger … both times his side lost pretty badly), Lupul only played in 23 games last season thanks to those health issues.

Even when he’s healthy, he’s overpaid at $4.25 million per year over the next three seasons and is a bit one-dimensional, but there’s little doubt that he can be an effective goal scorer. Considering the blows the Ducks’ blueline has taken lately, Anaheim needs every bit of offense they can get. This could be a sizable blow to a struggling – but still in many ways talented – Ducks team.

Blue Jackets’ Wennberg done for night with upper-body injury

Alexander Wennberg, Jay Bouwmeester
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It wouldn’t be a regular season game without a Columbus Blue Jackets injury, right?

OK, the Blue Jackets hope that 2015-16 looks different from the medically challenged mess of last season, but at least one player is banged up tonight.

Alexander Wennberg suffered an upper-body injury and won’t return on Friday, as the team noted.

There’s no word yet regarding how serious the issue might be. It looks like he might have suffered an injury thanks to a Chris Kreider check:

Naturally, the Blue Jackets must hope that this doesn’t begin another trend.

Kings grab goalie insurance by signing Budaj

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 22: Jhonas Enroth #1 and Peter Budaj #31 of the Los Angeles Kings stretch before a game against the Arizona Coyotes at STAPLES Center on September 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images)
via Los Angeles Kings
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In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.

The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.

At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.

As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.

The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.

All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.