The San Jose Sharks will be down one defenseman for Saturday’s game against Minnesota and maybe two. Marc-Edouard Vlasic
will miss tonight’s game after seeing limited action against Chicago due to an injury suffered during the contest.
“He won’t play tonight,” said McLellan.
The good news is he shouldn’t be out of the lineup for too long.
“He is still day-to-day and we anticipate Tuesday he’ll be good to go,” said McLellan.
With Vlasic definitely out, the question turns to Dan Boyle
who has missed the last three Sharks contests.
will be a game time decision,” said McLellan. “If Dan Boyle
is not able to go, Joslin (plays).”
The Sharks recalled Jason Demers
and Derek Joslin Saturday, and they were on the ice for the morning skate. Demers will definitely be part of the lineup and Joslin will have to wait and see later. McLellan is not worried about having two players out who are such stalwarts on the blueline as it’s a difficulty faced by all NHL teams at one point or another during the season.
“It’s (means) another young guy who can play,” said McLellan about both possibly dressing tonight. “We believe in the group and they’ve shown they can play. (Injuries) happen in the game of hockey and we’ll move on.”
The duo brings different styles to the lineup if they are both out there.
“Jos shoots the puck a little better and Demers is a more cerebral player,” said McLellan.
Shark Captain Rob Blake isn’t worried either when it comes to different bodies in the lineup.
“It’s not a big deal,” said Blake. “The reads and coverage stay the same. Communication will be a big thing.”
Who will play with who will not be known until closer to game time as well.
“I don’t’ know what the pairings are yet,” said Blake.
Players like Joslin and Demers have one very positive thing going for them no matter where they are playing their games. The Sharks of the NHL and the AHL are both playing amazing hockey.
“It just shows how deep the talent goes there,” said Joslin. “Nothing changes. It’s the same drills and it’s an easy transition.”
PLAYER OF THE MONTH
The San Jose Sharks announced today that goaltender Evgeni Nabokov has been selected as the Sharks Foundation “Player of the Month” for the month of January. Nabokov will be recognized prior to tonight’s game against the Minnesota Wild.
Nabokov posted an 8-2-2 record in 12 games during the month of January, posting a 1.95 goals-against average and a .935 save percentage.
Among the top goaltenders in the NHL, Nabokov currently ranks second in the League in wins (30), third in save percentage (.928) and fourth in goals-against average (2.20). He will be representing his home country of Russia in two weeks at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, BC.
This marks the 10th time Nabokov has been selected with the honor, the most in franchise history.