Golden Knights goalie Malcolm Subban will be placed on the injured reserve after suffering an upper-body injury during morning skate on Thursday, according to coach Gerard Gallant.
The club will call up Maxime Lagace from the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League to serve as backup behind Marc-Andre Fleury while Subban is out.
Subban has played well this season, going 11-3-1 with a .912 save percentage and 2.59 goals against average, but has now been placed on injured reserve twice. The 24-year-old rookie suffered a lower-body injury on Oct. 21 that kept him out more than a month.
During that span Lagace stepped in and went 6-6-1 as a starter.
“That’s the thing about injuries,” Gallant said. “When someone steps aside for a while and someone else gets an opportunity and takes advantage of it. As a coach you want to turn the same roster over every night, but injuries give people opportunity and confidence so I think we’ve built a lot of that this season with our group. ”
Gallant would not give a timetable for Subban’s return. The good news for the Golden Knights is Fleury will carry the bulk of the load (if not all of it), so Lagace likely won’t see much ice time. Vegas has a seven-game homestand coming up with no back-to-backs, which will allow Fleury to play with at least a day of rest in between each game.
The next back-to-back on the schedule for the Golden Knights is Feb. 26 and 27, with both games against the Los Angeles Kings.
Other injured players like Tomas Nosek and Luca Sbisa practiced today at City National Arena, and appear to be inching closer to a return. William Carrier and Jon Merrill are also currently on the injured reserve.
“We have enough (players) to play and that’s good,” Gallant said. “I think over the next little while we’re going to get some guys back, with Nosek being the first.”
Nosek hasn’t played since Jan. 16 in Nashville, but was a full participant in practice wearing a red jersey to designate no contact. Sbisa was placed on the injured reserve on Jan. 10 after undergoing surgery to repair a ruptured ligament in his left hand, but took part in drills with teammates after practice.