The NHL-leading Wild hosts the Central Division-leading Chicago Blackhawks tonight at Xcel Energy Center without one of its leading scorers.
Pierre-Marc Bouchard will miss tonight’s matchup with the Hawks due to facial injuries suffered from a hit in the waning moments of Tuesday’s 2-1 loss to the Winnipeg Jets.
Bouchard was behind the net, with the puck, making a move towards the boards, when he received a hard cross check from behind from Winnipeg defenseman Zach Bogosian. Bouchard went face first into the dasher and was bleeding from the nose as he left the ice. Bogosian received a five-minute roughing penalty and a game misconduct for the hit.
Bouchard skated this morning and was thought to be a game-time decision, but will be unavailable due to the facial injuries. He is the Wild’s third leading scorer with 18 points on the season.
Also skating this morning were Matt Cullen, who missed last night’s game due to an illness, and Marek Zidlicky, who has missed 13 games with a concussion. No update on how Cullen or Zidlicky felt after the skate, and both remain game-time decisions.
With Bouchard out, the Wild recalled center Warren Peters from the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League. Peters has appeared in nine games with the Wild this season.
The Wild also placed Josh Harding on the injured reserve, so Matt Hackett will backup Niklas Backstrom tonight in goal.