NHL News: Sharks’ Karlsson out after surgery, Devils’ Blackwood on IR, and Bolts’ Kucherov on COVID list

San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson is expected to be sidelined at least two months after undergoing surgery to repair a small muscle tear in his left forearm, the team announced Tuesday.

Karlsson’s surgery was performed Monday at Kaiser Permanente in San Jose. The team announced the two-time Norris Trophy recipient will be re-evaluated in mid-March.

“You could probably tell last game (a 3-2 loss to the Seattle Kraken on Jan. 20) that he wasn’t 100 percent,” Sharks coach Bob Boughner said. “He tried to muscle through it but just can’t go today. It’ll be reevaluated.”

Karlsson, 31, has recorded 26 points (eight goals, 18 assists) in 33 games this season.

He has 651 points (151 goals, 500 assists) in 821 career games with the Ottawa Senators (2009-18) and Sharks.

Devils place Blackwood on IR

Mackenzie Blackwood IR
May 1, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; New Jersey Devils goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood (29) against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The New Jersey Devils placed goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood on injured reserve on Tuesday due to his ailing left heel.

Goaltender Akira Schmid was recalled from Utica of the American Hockey League for New Jersey’s morning skate. He will join the Devils for their game on Tuesday night against the visiting Dallas Stars in Newark, N.J.

Blackwood, 25, owns a 9-9-3 record with two shutouts, a 3.29 goals-against average and an .894 save percentage in 23 games (22 starts) this season. He is 55-50-15 with eight shutouts, a 2.91 GAA and .908 SP in 128 career games (121 starts) since being selected by the Devils in the second round of the 2015 NHL Draft.

Schmid, 21, has turned aside 57 of 67 shots in three appearances (two starts) with New Jersey this season. He is 0-2-0 in the NHL and 9-0-2 with a sizzling 1.54 goals-against average and .948 save percentage in 11 appearances this season in the AHL.


Kucherov on COVID list

NHL news Nikita Kucherov
Jul 7, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov (86) warms up before game five of the 2021 Stanley Cup Final against the Montreal Canadiens at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Lightning star forward Nikita Kucherov was placed in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol on Tuesday.

Kucherov has recorded 17 points (five goals, 12 assists) in 11 games this season for the Lightning (28-10-5, 61 points), who return to action on Thursday against the visiting New Jersey Devils.

The former Hart Trophy recipient returned earlier this month after missing 32 games with a lower-body injury.

Kucherov, 28, missed the 2020-21 regular season after hip surgery but returned with a flourish in the playoffs, recording 32 points (eight goals, 24 assists) in 23 games to help the Lightning repeat as Stanley Cup champions.

Kucherov won the Hart Memorial Trophy, Art Ross Trophy and Ted Lindsay Award in 2018-19 after scoring a career-high 41 goals and leading the league in assists (87) and points (128).

He has 564 points (226 goals, 338 assists) in 526 career regular-season games since making his debut in 2013.

–Field Level Media