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Sharks tweak lineup for Maple Leafs game, get some good news on injury front

By Curtis Pashelka

Defenseman Mario Ferraro remains out indefinitely but the San Jose Sharks could get two other veteran players back soon, possibly by the end of their road trip this weekend.

Sharks coach David Quinn said Wednesday that forward Nico Sturm is getting “very close” to a return from an upper-body injury and that goalie James Reimer could be available to play either Saturday or Sunday.

Reimer was placed on injured reserve Monday but he, Sturm, and Ferraro are all on the Sharks’ trip, which concludes with games against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday and the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday.

“If (Reimer) keeps getting better, there’s a chance,” he could come off IR this weekend, Quinn said.

A timeline for when Ferraro might return is less clear. He was placed on IR on Saturday with a lower-body injury, one day after he blocked four shots in a game against the Los Angeles Kings, and would be eligible to be activated prior to the Sharks’ game with the Senators.

Quinn, though, has described the defenseman as being week-to-week.

“I honestly can’t give you an exact time, because it’s (about) pain tolerance and he’s a tough kid, so we’ll see,” Quinn said. “It’d be irresponsible for me to tell you when he could come back. I honestly have no idea.”

Sturm, 27, has missed the Sharks’ last five games, recovering from a head injury he suffered in a Nov. 19 game against the New York Rangers.

DELL GETS THE NOD

Aaron Dell, not Kaapo Kahkonen, will start Wednesday’s game with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Dell, 33, has a 3-3-1 record and a .904 save percentage in seven games with the Barracuda this season. His last NHL start came on Jan. 25, 2022, when he was with Buffalo, as he faced 47 shots in a 5-2 loss to the Senators.

Kahkonen earned his first shutout with the Sharks on Tuesday, as he made 28 saves in a 4-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens.

Forward Evgeny Svechnikov will also draw back into the lineup Wednesday, replacing Jeffrey Viel, who played 7:22 against the Canadiens. Svechnikov will likely play on the Sharks’ fourth line with Steven Lorentz and Oskar Lindblom.

SPARKLING PK

The Sharks killed all six penalties they took Tuesday against the Canadiens, improving upon what was already the best penalty kill in the NHL.

Going into Wednesday’s game, the Sharks had killed 91.2 percent (62 of 68) of the penalties they had taken this season. Starting with their 5-4 win over the Dallas Stars, the Sharks have killed 25 of 27 penalties (92.6 percent), which has helped them to a 5-4-1 record in that time.

Source: Paradise Post