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Updated: March 2nd, 2012 3:37pm
Niklas Backstrom sidelined by groin strain; Matt Hackett recalled

Niklas Backstrom sidelined by groin strain; Matt Hackett recalled

by Judd Zulgad
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The Minnesota Wild, already without top forward Mikko Koivu, have now lost No. 1 goalie Niklas Backstrom.

The team announced Friday that Backstrom will be out two-to-four weeks because of a groin strain. Backstrom was injured in the first period of Thursday night's loss at Montreal and had to leave the game.

The Wild, who will face the Red Wings on Friday night in Detroit, recalled goalie Matt Hackett from the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League earlier in the day under emergency conditions.

Hackett, 21, is 2-0-0 with a 0.68 goals-against average and .979 save percentage in four games with the Wild this season. In 35 games with the Aeros, he is 17-13-4 with a 2.41 GAA, a .917 save percentage and one shutout.

With goalie Josh Harding's contract set to expire after this season, there were many who thought the Wild might deal Harding before last Monday's trade deadline and pair Hackett with Backstrom as the Wild's goalie tandem.

But Harding will now take over as the No. 1 goalie. Harding stopped 19 of 22 shots he faced Thursday in the Wild's 5-4 shootout loss at the Bell Centre.

Judd Zulgad is a columnist for He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays and "Saturday Morning SportsTalk" from 10 a.m. to noon on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
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