While Clarkson was booted early from Thursday’s preseason contest for kneeing Fontaine, the Wild forward is dealing with an ailment from a separate hit that occurred later in the contest. Fontaine did exit the game after the Clarkson hit, but he attempted to return before leaving again.
Wild coach Mike Yeo described Fontaine’s ailment as a “sore side,” per the Star Tribune. The bench boss described the decision to hold Fontaine back as “precautionary” as they don’t want to “risk him injuring anything any worse.”
If he does miss Minnesota’s opener as expected, then it will be the second straight season a training camp injury has cost Fontaine.
His projected absence could lead to Tyler Graovac or Brett Bulmer potentially starting the season in the NHL.