David Krejci diagnosed with a concussion; will miss at least a week of action

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While the Bruins are certainly playing well this year, they haven’t been absolved from injuries. With Marc Savard and Marco Sturm already out of the lineup, the Bruins will have to make do without the services of David Krejci for a little while as Krejci has been diagnosed with a concussion. Krejci suffered the concussion last night thanks to a wicked open ice hit by Blues forward T.J. Oshie. Krejci then smacked his head on the dasher on his way down to the ice.  You can see video of the hit here on YouTube. Joe Haggerty of CSN-NE reports that Krejci will miss at least a week of action.

The 24-year-old playmaker will be out at least a week with the concussion, and will be evaluated by team doctors before returning to the B’s lineup. Krejci has a pair of goals and eights assists in 11 games with the B’s, and his presence will clearly be missed on the top alongside Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton with games against the Penguins, Canadiens and Senators this week.

The Bruins now have an interesting arrangement up the middle at center. Patrice Bergeron now figures to be the team’s top center with both Krejci and Savard out and rookie Tyler Seguin could slot in as the #2 man. Seguin was benched for most of the third period in last night’s shootout loss to the Blues after playing possibly his worst game of the season. Seguin did participate in the shootout and scored a pretty goal on Jaroslav Halak.

The Bruins have a bit too much experience in dealing with centers with concussions so if you’re worried that they’ll rush Krejci back into action, how they’ve handled Patrice Bergeron and Marc Savard in the past should tell you otherwise. The effect Krejci’s absence has on the offense should be noted right away. The Bruins offense hasn’t been the focus of the team thanks to the play of Tim Thomas, but the Bruins will need to generate more offense as the season goes along no matter what. Thomas and Rask won’t be supermen all year long and the B’s troubles scoring (22nd out of 30 teams in scoring so far this year) will come into focus soon enough.

Canucks’ Ilya Mikheyev to have season-ending knee surgery

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VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Vancouver Canucks right wing Ilya Mikheyev is set to have season-ending surgery on his left knee.

Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said Friday night the 28-year-old Russian forward tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s first preseason game Sept. 25. Mikheyev will undergo surgery next week and is expected to be ready for training camp in the fall.

Mikheyev was originally listed as week-to-week with the injury and played 45 regular-season games, finishing with 13 goals and 15 assists. He scored in his final appearance Friday night, a 5-2 home victory over Columbus.

Mikheyev signed a four-year, $19 million contract as a free agent last summer.

Maple Leafs’ Matthews out at least 3 weeks with knee injury

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Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports
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Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.

The team announced the reigning MVP’s anticipated absence Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in Toronto’s victory against the New York Rangers.

Matthews is expected to miss at least six games and could be out for a few more. The timing of the injury coinciding with the NHL All-Star break and the Maple Leafs bye week prevents this from costing Matthews more time out of the lineup.

After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for Feb. 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced Aleskander Barkov from the host Florida Panthers will take Matthews’ place on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.

Matthews, who won the Hart Trophy last season after leading the NHL with 60 goals, has 53 points in 47 games this season.

Caufield opted for surgery with Habs out of playoff race

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MONTREAL — Montreal Canadiens winger Cole Caufield said Friday he wouldn’t be having season-ending surgery on his right shoulder if the team were in playoff contention.

But with the Canadiens near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, the 22-year-old Caufield said he decided to have the surgery to protect his long-term health. The procedure is scheduled to be performed by Dr. Peter Millett on Wednesday.

“I didn’t want to stop playing,” Caufield said. “I had a couple tests done to look at it more clearly but, in the end, like it could’ve been one more fall and it could have been even worse.”

Caufield, who leads the Canadiens with 26 goals in 46 games, had three different medical opinions on his shoulder before concluding that his season was over.

“I think they’ve seen a lot more than I have and they know the differences and what they like or don’t like about it,” he said about the medical opinions. “Long term, I think this is what’s best but for sure it was tough to sit out that game against Toronto on Saturday night.”

Caufield initially felt the injury in an awkward fall during Montreal’s 4-2 loss at Dallas on Dec. 23. He said his right shoulder popped, and he replaced it himself.

Caufield felt it again in the Habs’ 4-3 loss at Nashville on Jan. 12. The club announced on Jan. 21 that Caufield would miss the rest of the season.

Caufield is nearing the end of his three-year, entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer.

All-Star Matty Beniers to miss next 2 games for Kraken

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SEATTLE — Seattle Kraken rookie All-Star Matty Beniers will miss the team’s final two games before the All-Star break after taking a big hit from Vancouver’s Tyler Myers earlier this week.

Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said after morning skate Friday that Beniers would not play Friday night against Calgary or Saturday against Columbus. Hakstol did not speculate on Beniers’ availability for next weekend’s All-Star Game in Florida.

The team has not specified what kind of injury Beniers sustained from the hit. He was barreled over by Myers away from the play early in the second period in Wednesday’s 6-1 victory over Vancouver. Myers was penalized for interference on the play. Beniers returned briefly for one shift later in the period but did not play in the third period.

Beniers is Seattle’s lone All-Star selection this season. He leads all rookies in goals (17) and points (36), and is fifth in total ice time for rookies.

Seattle also placed defenseman Justin Schultz on injured reserve and recalled forward Max McCormick from Coachella Valley of the AHL. Hakstol said Schultz is improving but there’s no timeline on his return.