VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- It hasn’t easy to find a goaltending story to trump the Vancouver Canucks’ ongoing saga with Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider, but the Minnesota Wild had one Tuesday.
News that symptoms related to multiple sclerosis will prevent Josh Harding from making a start on the second half of back-to-back games not only means a likely first NHL game for 22-year-old American Hockey League call up Darcy Kuemper, but could create a crunch on the 23-man roster should the Wild activate defenseman Jared Spurgeon from the injured list.
At the other end, it will be Luongo back in goal for the Canucks after watching Schneider win the past two.
Here's how the rest of the rosters should look when the Canucks (7-2-2) try to extend their win streak to six games against a Minnesota team that is 0-8-2 in Vancouver since Jan. 31, 2009:
Daniel Sedin – Henrik Sedin – Alexandre Burrows
Mason Raymond – Jordan Schroeder – Jannik Hansen
Zack Kassian – Maxim Lapierre – Chris Higgins
Aaron Volpatti – Andrew Ebbett – Dale Weise
Dan Hamhuis – Alexander Edler
Jason Garrison – Kevin Bieksa
Keith Ballard – Chris Tanev
Injured: Ryan Kesler, David Booth
Scratched: Manny Malhotra (personal), Andrew Alberts, Cam Barker
Notes: Malhotra has been away from the team two days for personal reasons, according to assistant coach Rick Bowness, who said he had no sense when Malhotra would return. … Booth (groin) and Kesler (shoulder and wrist surgery) continue to skate with the team after missing the entire season to date, but there is no timetable for the return of either.
Zach Parise – Mikko Koivu – Charlie Coyle
Dany Heatley – Mikael Granlund – Devin Setoguchi
Matt Cullen – Kyle Brodziak – Cal Clutterbuck
Mike Rupp – Zenon Konopka – Pierre-Marc Bouchard
Ryan Suter – Jonas Brodin
Clayton Stoner – Tom Gilbert
Justin Falk – Nate Prosser
Injured: Josh Harding, Jared Spurgeon
Scratched: Torrey Mitchell, Matt Kassian, Marco Scandella
Notes: Spurgeon, who has missed nine games with a bone bruise, was talking like he would return to the lineup, but said he hadn't been told. In order to make room for his return from the injured list, the Wild would need to make another roster move, likely involving Matt Kassian, who was not among the players who skated Tuesday morning despite not playing a game yet this season.