The Nashville Predators have been dealt another blow up front, as center Paul Gaustad has been sent home from their Western road trip after suffering an upper-body injury against Dallas on Tuesday.
Gaustad, 31, left last night’s game late in the second period and didn’t return.
Today, news broke that he’d been sent back to Nashville for further examination, putting his status for the remainder of the roadie (the Preds have four games remaining) in doubt.
The injury will leave Nashville pretty thin up front, as the club put leading scorer Colin Wilson and three-time 20-goalscorer Patric Hornqvist on injured reserve earlier this week.
Josh Cooper of The Tennessean reports forward Chris Mueller has been recalled from AHL Milwaukee and will meet the team in Vancouver. The Preds take on the Canucks Thursday night at Rogers Arena.
As for Gaustad, it’s unclear exactly what his ailment is, but the veteran has missed extended time this year with an upper-body ailment that may (or, may not) be related to his current injury.
The former Buffalo Sabre has appeared in 19 games this season for the Preds, scoring 1G-3A-4PTS while averaging over 14 minutes per game.
Gaustad has always been dynamite in the faceoff circle and this season has been no exception. He ranks third in the NHL, winning draws at a 60.7 percent clip.
Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.
Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.
While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.
Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.
It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.
“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”
Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.
Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.
Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.
“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”