With five straight losses, now is not the time the Minnesota Wild want to be shorthanded because of injuries and illnesses, but that's the challenge the team will be faced with against Winnipeg on Monday night.
Headlining the injury report is Wild center Mikael Granlund. He was placed on injured reserve on Sunday after Winnipeg's Dustin Byfuglien drilled him into the boards with a hard check.
The team announced Monday that Granlund will miss about a month after undergoing surgery to repair a fractured left wrist.
Adding to the problems is Jonas Brodin. According to the Star Tribune, he didn't make the trip to Winnipeg because of his upper-body injury. Goalie Niklas Backstrom and forward Jason Zucker also stayed home; they are battling norovirus.
With 36 points, the Wild are seven points behind Vancouver, Los Angeles and San Jose for the sixth, seventh and eighth spots in the Western Conference playoff race and adding to the nightmare slump is that Winnipeg has 45 points, two of which were earned in a brutal overtime victory over the Wild in St. Paul on Saturday night.
To replenish the roster, the Wild called up forwards Tyler Graovac and Brett Sutter from their American Hockey League affiliate in Des Moines, Iowa. Graovac leads the Iowa Wild this season with 24 points in 31 games, including 12 goals. He'll wear No. 53 in his NHL debut.
Defenseman Justin Falk was reassigned to Iowa.
Darcy Kuemper is expected to start in goal for the Wild, Michael Russo reports. Kuemper missed Saturday's game after a 24-hour bout with food poisoning.
Minnesota lost six straight games between Dec. 19-31 last year.