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Dumba to miss 'significant' time with upper-body injury

Defenseman had led League blueliners with 12 goals in first 32 games this season

by Dan Myers @MNWildScribe /

ST. PAUL -- The Wild will be without a significant part of its lineup for a 'significant' amount of time.

General Manager Paul Fenton confirmed the team's worst-case scenario regarding Matt Dumba on Friday when he announced the defenseman will have surgery next week to repair an upper-body injury.

Fenton didn't have an exact timetable for Dumba's return, only outlining it as an indefinite absence for now.

Video: Paul Fenton update on Matt Dumba

"We won't know [an exact timetable] until they get in there," Fenton said. "They're giving me a general timeline, but I don't want to say anything that just comes back and haunts us. Let's just make sure first how the surgery goes, and then we'll make a statement from there.

"Certainly, we were hoping that it was going to be a quick thing to go through things but from talking to doctors, he does need surgery. But for those that have had surgery and they say it's gonna be six months and you're walking three months later, that's what we're kind of hoping for is that he gets something taken care of and maybe it's quicker."

Dumba's loss is a huge blow to Minnesota's blue line, especially offensively. His 12 goals through the first 32 games led all NHL defensemen, and put him on pace to smash his previous career best of 14 goals set last season in 82 games.

Dumba has been especially valuable on the Wild's power play, scoring six times with the man advantage -- already tied for the most in a single season in his career.

"It really hurts, there's no question," Fenton said. "I was really glad at the way our defense was playing. We had balance on there. But now we've got some guys that have to get used to [new partners], get continuity and become acclimated."

Video: Bruce Boudreau practice update

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