ST. PAUL — Wild coach Bruce Boudreau was informed during the first television timeout of Tuesday’s game against Calgary at Xcel Energy Center that something was amiss with goalie Devan Dubnyk.
“Chad (Krawiec, the Wild’s assistant athletic trainer) came up and told me that Dooby’s struggling,” Boudreau said. “I said, ‘If he’s struggling, he can come out any time.’ Then he said he could play the rest of the period.”
Dubnyk remained in the game and was outstanding, stopping all 10 shots he faced, as the Wild took a 1-0 lead on Matt Cullen’s goal after 20 minutes, despite getting only four shots on Calgary’s Mike Smith. That would be the only period of work for Dubnyk in what became a 2-1 shootout win for the Wild.
Dubnyk was replaced by Alex Stalock to open the second period with the Wild only saying that their regular goalie was dealing with a lower body injury. Boudreau said afterward that he hadn’t talked to the Wild’s doctors and would know more on Wednesday.
Boudreau speculated that Dubnyk’s injury wasn’t that serious based on how he played in the first period but added, “we’ve got four games till next Tuesday, so obviously I’m concerned, but I don’t want to get too concerned until I know what it is.”
Dubnyk, who was making his 23rd appearance of the season, was not on the bench for the remainder of the game and the Wild brought emergency goalie Connor Beaupre down from the press box to back up Stalock. The 23-year-old Beaupre played high school hockey at Edina and is the son of former North Stars goalie Don Beaupre.
Stalock, who had started in the Wild’s overtime win over San Jose on Sunday night, gave up a second-period goal but made 16 saves over the final two-plus periods. Stalock was given a head’s up by Dubnyk in the first period that he might have to come in.
“He came over during one of the TV timeouts and said, ‘Hey, be ready just in case,'” Stalock said. “To have an intermission is always nice. Gives you time to warm-up and that’s how you get into it.”
The Wild will have to summon a goalie from their AHL affiliate in Iowa, probably Niklas Svedberg, if Dunbyk has to miss time.
Stalock, who also stopped four-of-five attempts by the Flames in the shootout, got the victory and now has four on the season in nine games.
“I think it’s just going in and giving the team a chance to win every night,” Stalock said when asked about potentially having to take on the bulk of the goaltending duties if Dubnyk is sidelined. “That’s the goal whatever position I’m playing. It’s to go out and give the team a chance.”
The Dubnyk injury came on the same day the Wild learned that defenseman Jared Spurgeon (groin strain) could return to the ice as early as Wednesday’s practice. Spurgeon has missed seven games and his return would be a big boost to the blue line.