The Dallas Stars recalled winger Curtis McKenzie on Tuesday just in case winger Valeri Nichushkin's injury needed him to miss more than just Tuesday's game against Columbus, and it turned out to be the right call.
Per Mike Heika, Stars GM Jim Nill has confirmed that Nichushkin will miss "about a week" with a groin injury, after leaving practice early on Monday and staying in Dallas on Tuesday to consult with team doctors regarding the ailment. Nichushkin was played sparingly in training camp and in the preseason, as the Stars tried to manage his injury, but it's clear that the young winger needs some time to allow the sore groin to heal.
"He's probably been dealing with this for a about six weeks, and it's not getting better, so we have just decided to sit him down for about a week," Nill said, per Heika. "We'll just let him rest and then read it from there."
Lindy Ruff said it could be 7-10 days before Val Nichushkin (groin/hip) before he will return to practice.— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) October 15, 2014
So...probably the "week" timeframe was before he'd getting back on the ice. That leaves two weeks or so as a likely timeline for his return.
Nichushkin hurt the groin before camp started, and just never seemed to be able to get fully 100 percent while also battling through an illness before the season began. The Stars thought he had gotten past the injury, before Nichushkin re-aggravated the injury during Monday's practice.
McKenzie was a healthy scratch against the Blue Jackets, but will almost certainly get into a game while Nichushkin is sitting out and healing. Coach Lindy Ruff noted that it's likely McKenzie plays on Thursday against Pittsburgh if Nichushkin wouldn't be able to play.