TAMPA — The injuries are piling up as the Sharks dressing room is quickly turning into a hospital ward.
The Sharks (14-8-2) sent forward Joonas Donskoi (lower body) and defenseman Tim Heed (upper body) to the injured reserve Saturday, retroactive to Nov. 28 and Nov. 25. Mikkel Boedker (lower body) and Melker Karlsson (cut) will be scratched from Saturday’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning (17-6-2) because of injuries they suffered in Friday’s 2-1 win over the Florida Panthers.
Head coach Pete DeBoer labeled all four injuries as “day to day” as Heed will be eligible to return to the lineup for the Sharks game against the Washington Capitals Monday, and Donskoi can rejoin the squad when it kicks off a three-game homestand at SAP Center against the Carolina Hurricanes Thursday.
DeBoer said Friday that Donskoi’s injury isn’t “serious”, an assessment he stood by Saturday.
“Nothing changed,” the Sharks coach said. “We were going to get up this morning, see if he’s better. He is better, but not ready to play yet.”
2. Sharks recall Marcus Sorensen, activate Barclay Goodrow.
On the surface, DeBoer’s claim that Donskoi’s injury is “day to day” might seem misleading considering that the team sent him to the injured reserve Saturday.
In reality, it was a move the Sharks needed to make to give themselves an insurance policy against further injuries Saturday with Boedker and Karlsson’s health also in question.
By placing Donskoi on the injured reserve, the Sharks were able to recall forward Marcus Sorensen from the AHL Barracuda. Sorensen will join the Sharks in Washington, D.C. Sunday.
Likewise, moving Heed to the injured reserve allowed the Sharks to activate Goodrow for Saturday’s game, giving the team 12 bodies to put on the ice at forward.
Sorensen got the nod by notching 14 points (5g, 9a) in 19 games for the Barracuda. The 25-year-old Swede suited for 19 games with the Sharks last season and he dressed for all six of the team’s Stanley Cup playoff games against the Edmonton Oilers.
“He played well down there,” DeBoer said. “He was a guy that we had in the mix right until the end of training camp, and he’s got some elements that we could use up here. His speed and tenacity when he plays inside. I like his game when he’s playing it.”
Goodrow will make his return after missing seven games with an upper-body injury. The 24-year-old forward appeared to be on his way to locking down the Sharks fourth line center position before he suffered his injury against the Panthers on Nov. 16, recording two assists in five games.
3. Martin Jones will start in goal against Lightning.
Jones will make his return Saturday from a day-to-day injury suffered against the Winnipeg Jets on Nov. 25.
The timing of Jones’ return couldn’t be better as the Sharks are facing the NHL’s third-ranked offense (3.56 goals per game), its top scorer in Steven Stamkos (37 points) and its No.2 goal scorer in Nikita Kucherov (17 goals).
Nevertheless, Aaron Dell acquitted himself well in Jones’ place over the first two games of the Sharks road trip, stopping 61 of the 63 shots he faced
“Thankfully, it wasn’t more serious. You never know,” DeBoer said, referring to Jones’ injury. “Deller’s given us two great starts, and with a back to back, it’s nice to get a fresh guy in there.”