Toronto Maple Leafs wing Joffrey Lupul will miss at least three games with a groin injury and will not travel with the team to Pittsburgh, where they start a three-game road trip Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
"The diagnosis is he's got a Grade 2 groin strain," Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said.
Lupul exited Toronto's 6-0 loss Monday to the Columbus Blue Jackets late in the second period and did not return. His 11:57 of ice time for the game was well below his season average of 18:18.
In 22 games this season, Lupul has eight goals and 15 points. His 68 shots rank second on the Maple Leafs behind leading scorer Phil Kessel.
Lupul's injury came the same night that top center Tyler Bozak returned from a hamstring injury that cost him 12 games. Third-line center Dave Bolland also is out long-term after severing a tendon in his left ankle on Nov. 2.
"It's one of those things," Carlyle said. "You don’t expect you’re going to have personnel gone from your lineup at the rate we're having. And key people missing. It's another opportunity for someone to step in and fill that role."