The last 24 hours have been quite busy for the Dallas Stars. They defeated the Florida Panthers 6-4 Thursday night, had some injuries, and were forced to make roster moves on Friday.
Scott Wedgewood: The most important of the bunch is the health of Scott Wedgewood. Stars Head Coach Pete DeBoer offered some good news on Friday.
“He is better today. Some positive signs,” he said. “I would call him doubtful for tomorrow, but it was a good day. He got up, felt significantly better, and came to the rink. Potentially might skate tomorrow. So good news.”
The 29-year-old goaltender was playing spectacularly against Florida but was twisted up trying to hug a puck against the pipe in the second period.
Wedgewood remained down motionless for several minutes and eventually needed to be stretchered off the ice in a horrifying scene from Sunrise. He was not transported to the hospital and remained in the dressing room while Jake Oettinger and the Stars finished out the win.
“I can count on one hand the number of guys I have seen stretchered off the ice,” DeBoer said. “When you see a stretcher come out, you know it’s serious and significant. Your immediate thought isn’t about hockey, it is ‘is he going to be okay?'.”
Scott Wedgewood leaves the ice. pic.twitter.com/Va06sobdai
— Matthew DeFranks (@MDeFranks) November 18, 2022
Roster Moves: With the injury, some roster moves were imminent.
Dallas reassigned Matej Blumel back down to Texas on Friday, likely the first of multiple moves that will bring up a goaltender to back up Oettinger.
The Texas Stars also called up two goaltenders from the ECHL Friday, so it is most likely that Matt Murray will get his second stint in Dallas until Wedgewood is ready.
Matej Blumel: For Blumel, it is just more turmoil in his young career. This is now the second time that a goaltender injury and the Stars tight salary cap have forced him back down to the AHL.
“It is unfortunate,” DeBoer said. “I think that is part of the cap world that all young guys have to deal with.”
To compound things, the 22-year-old has done plenty to stick around. He has had scoring chances in every game he has played, and recorded his first career goal on Sunday in Philadelphia.
“I think the impression he made probably assures that he is going to get another chance again,” DeBoer said.
“He has been great. And listen, I can’t overstate how well he did,” he added. “He had two breakaways, scored a goal, created at least another chance. He only played four games. We've got guys that go a dozen games and don’t do that.”
Denis Gurianov: Moving Blumel down makes things even dicier within the forward group for Dallas. They currently only have 12 forwards on the roster and one of those is Denis Gurianov, who has not played since Nov. 8 with an upper-body injury.
“I would call him day-to-day,” DeBoer said. “He got through practice today. We didn't do a lot of contact though, so we’ll see how he feels tomorrow morning.”
If Gurianov is unable to go, Dallas would be forced to either skate with 11 forwards and seven defensemen or push one of the D-men up onto a forward line. But DeBoer did mention that Gurianov could have played Thursday if he needed to, so it is likely that he will be ready.
Roope Hintz: Hintz was not on the ice for a very short practice on Friday. It was likely a maintenance day.