It sounds like the remarkable climate changes from travel may have gotten the best of Florida defenseman Dimitri Kulikov, as he sat out of Friday night's contest against the Calgary Flames, missing out on a 6-5 win and a great chance for some points, by the look of things. There is no official word, but seeing as though that the Panthers are playing in Edmonton on Sunday, I would think that Kulikov would be questionable, at the very least, to return. There is also a part of me that expects someone else to catch the bug, as it has been a common occurrence among teams carrying bugs.
Sounds like the amount of time missed will be minimal for Ryan, who has Kulikov this season, thanks to the Waiver Draft, that is. Since the Waiver Draft, Kulikov has collected 5 points in 13 games for Ryan, but that hasn't truly helped his woeful blueline, which ranks 20th in the pool with only 41 total points.
The busiest night of the week is Saturday night and since I am not sure if there will be another post today, I am going to have a quick look at the goalies right now, but by no means is everything official.
At the time of the post, this much we know... Braden Holtby is going for the Capitals against the Red Wings, Craig Anderson starts for the Senators in Arizona and Brian Elliott gets the call for the Blues, who are hosting the Hurricanes.
Most of the regular number one goalies are all probable to start, minus those who are injured or those who are in a platooned situation. By that, I mean Niklas Backstrom is expected to start for the Wild against the Predators and Michael Hutchinson should be going against the Kings tonight.
Benson has both of his goalies going tonight... head-to-head, again. Having two goalies in the same division does have its draw backs, as Kari Lehtonen and the Stars go to visit Semyon Varlamov and the Avalanche.
The Ottawa/Arizona game does also provide an interesting match-up, as Cam's Anderson will take on Wes' Mike Smith (probable), which pits goalies on 5th and 4th place teams, respectively, against each other. Cam goes into Saturday only 3 points behind Wes.
Wes' other goalie, Carey Price, and his Canadiens host Marc-Andre Fleury and the Penguins, in a goalie battle between 4th and 3rd place, as Wes chases down Clayton for the spot. The gap there is only 1 point, as both teams try to track down Grant S. at the same time.
Clayton also leads going into Saturday for the Mover & Shaker and has both of his goalies projected to go, both Elliott and Fleury have each been mentioned, so far. Wes, who follows, has both his goalies going in Smith and Price, as does Cam, who is in 3rd this week, has Hutchinson and Anderson.
The Basement Dweller race this change a bit on Friday night, as Stuart fell to the bottom, if only slightly, but will have no help from his goalies. Tony, who climbed out on Friday, has a minor chance that Jaroslav Halak will play in back-to-back games, although it does seem doubtful. Three other teams are 2 points up on Stuart, they belong to Dale C, Stacey C. and Mike, and there is only one goalie between them (Holtby for Stacey) going, which doesn't bode well for points being collected by these teams tonight.
Wow, that turned out to be a long preview, eh?
An updated list of injuries can be found here.