Wild lose Fontaine to lower-body injury

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Minnesota has lost the services of forward Justin Fontaine for “a few weeks” with a lower-body ailment suspected to be a groin injury, per the Pioneer Press.

Fontaine, 26, is coming off a solid rookie campaign in which he scored 13 goals and 21 points in 66 games, chipping in with a goal and assist during Minnesota’s playoff run.

In July, the Wild rewarded Fontaine with a two-year, one-way deal worth $1 million per season — but now, with him already ruled out for the season opener (and likely beyond that), a roster spot has opened up. Per Mike Russo of the Minnesota Star-Tribune, that leaves five skaters now battling for three roster positions: Jason Zucker, Michael Keranen, Stephane Veilleux, Cody Almond and Brett Sutter.