PS — Sid’s wrist looked pretty good on the bucket lift.
The Vancouver Canucks will be without forward Derek Dorsett for a considerable while longer.
The Canucks announced today that Dorsett will undergo “cervical fusion surgery to repair disc degeneration in his neck.” The club expects him to “make a full recovery and return to play,” but no timeline could be provided at this point.
Dorsett’s surgery will be performed by Dr. Robert Watkins of the Marina Del Rey Hospital spine clinic in Los Angeles.
“The decision to perform surgery was made after a thorough review of our options, including non-surgical treatment and rehabilitation,” said GM Jim Benning in a release. “Derek, our Canucks medical team and Dr. [Robert] Watkins believe that surgery offers the best outcome both for his career and long-term health. Derek is an important member of our team and we are optimistic for a full recovery.”
Dorsett last played Nov. 17 against the Coyotes. He was forced to leave the game with what the Canucks called an upper-body injury.
The 29-year-old has one goal and three assists in 14 games this season. He still leads all Vancouver forwards with 35 hits and 33 PIM.
Dorsett is signed through 2018-19 for a cap hit of $2.65 million.
Former Avalanche forward Marek Svatos died early last month of a drug overdose, according to the coroner in Colorado.
The Denver Post is reporting that Svatos “had codeine, morphine and an anti-anxiety medication in his system when he died of combined drug intoxication.” The Douglas County coroner also concluded in its report that Svatos had a history of heroin abuse and depression.
“Drug paraphernalia was found at the scene,” the report said, per the Post.
Svatos was 34 when he died Nov. 5. He last played in the NHL for the Ottawa Senators in 2010-11, before finishing his career overseas.
As reported earlier by the Post, Svatos was living in the Denver area with his wife and two young sons.
A situation worth monitoring in Arizona — Anthony Duclair will be in the press box for tonight’s game against the Blue Jackets, which head coach Dave Tippett classified as a “reset,” per the Republic.
Tippett did say Duclair would draw back into the lineup tomorrow, when the Coyotes take on the ‘Hawks in Chicago.
This season has been a struggle for the 21-year-old, one of the key pieces acquired when Arizona traded Keith Yandle to the Rangers in March of 2015. Duclair started brightly for the Coyotes, scoring 20 goals and 44 points in 81 games last season, but his offensive production has fallen off a cliff in ’16-17 — he has just one goal and four points through 23 games, and his ice time has dropped to an average of 13:10 per night.
In Saturday’s loss to Columbus, Duclair had the fourth-lowest TOI on the team, at 11:16.
“A little frustrated right now with the way things are going,” Duclair told the Republic. “I just gotta battle through it.”
As mentioned in the headline, Duclair’s name has recently surfaced in the rumor mill.
A few weeks ago, Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos said he was “hearing teams are saying that Duclair could be had at the right price,” adding the Coyotes were looking for a “pretty penny” in return.
Kypreos’ comments were then followed by a report from TSN’s Darren Dreger, who said the following on Insider Trading:
“John Chayka, the general manager, is not shopping Anthony Duclair but they’d consider it if there was a significant deal that made sense to them and brought a center back to the Arizona Coyotes.
“Duclair’s name actually surfaced in Buffalo at the draft in the summer, and more recently has re-surfaced. They’re not pushing him out the door, but like Bob [McKenzie] said with Dougie Hamilton in Calgary, the same thing applies with Duclair — they’re willing to listen.”
Part of the reason Arizona could be willing to move Duclair is its wealth of young talent on the wings. Lawson Crouse, Brendan Perlini and Max Domi are already there, and Chayka may be willing to trade from a position of strength.
We did this same list about a year ago, when the likes of Alex Stalock and Anders Lindback were called out.
Stalock and Lindback are no longer in the league, and with today’s news that Jhonas Enroth has been waived by the Maple Leafs, here are five more backups that need to pull their games together:
Carter Hutton — Hutton is the Blues’ backup to Jake Allen, and it hasn’t been going well with his new team. The 30-year-old is 2-4-1 with an .888 save percentage, putting all the more pressure on Allen to win games, now that Brian Elliott isn’t there anymore. The Blues’ goaltending rarely fails to be interesting, and that’s the case again this season. Allen hasn’t been great either (.907), but at least he’s been winning (12-3-3).
James Reimer — He was supposed to be a reliable No. 2 behind Roberto Luongo, and perhaps even take over the No. 1 duties down the road. But Reimer has struggled since signing a five-year, $17 million contract with the Panthers on July 1. The 28-year-old is 3-4-1 with an .896 save percentage, which does not compare well to Luongo, the oldest goalie in the NHL, who’s 9-7-1 with a .929 save rate.
Darcy Kuemper — Typically, a bubble team like the Minnesota Wild can’t afford to have below-average backup goaltending. But that’s exactly what Kuemper has provided, going 2-2-1 with an .897 save percentage. His last start, he gave up five goals to the offensively challenged Vancouver Canucks in a 5-4 loss. Kuemper has only had one solid start this season, a 35-save victory over the Senators. Fortunately for the Wild, Devan Dubnyk (10-6-3, .946) has been beyond good, and that’s why they’re in a playoff spot for now.
Michael Hutchinson — Yes, goaltending remains a vulnerability in Winnipeg, even after Ondrej Pavelec was removed from the equation. Hutchinson is 3-4-2 with an .898 save percentage — not great numbers behind Connor Hellebuyck, who hasn’t been a whole lot better (10-9-0, .911). Hutchinson did play well Saturday in St. Louis, stopping 20 shots in a 3-2 overtime win. He’ll need a few more of those efforts the rest of the way if the Jets are going to make the playoffs.
Anton Khudobin — Right off the bat, we must mention that Khudobin’s last start for the Boston Bruins was a very encouraging one. But his overall numbers, 1-3-0 with a .902 save percentage, put him on the list. Khudobin recently spent time in the AHL on a conditioning stint. He’s been good since his return from Providence, and he’ll need to keep being good behind Tuukka Rask, because the Bruins don’t want to miss the playoffs for a third straight year.