The Nashville Predators will likely be without two veteran forwards for the rest of the first-round series against the Stars. On Monday morning, the team announced that both Brian Boyle (appendectomy) and Wayne Simmonds (lower-body) are week-to-week.
Boyle missed Game 2 in Nashville, and the Predators listed him as sick. Rocco Grimaldi replaced him as a fourth-line winger and scored Nashville’s only regulation goal.
Simmonds was hit by a slap shot from teammate Roman Josi in his left knee during Game 2, leaving less than six minutes into the first period and not returning the rest of the night. In his place, the Predators inserted Miikka Salomaki as the other fourth-line winger Monday night.
Salomaki had not played an NHL game since Jan. 4.
“When these things do pop up where you end up missing some players, you look to your bench and see what you have,” Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. “A lot of these guys have been regulars or have played in playoff games or have history. There’s always something that you look at that maybe leans one guy over the other. That changes from game to game and that changes from series to series.”
Prospects on hand: Five Stars prospects were in Dallas on Monday morning to watch the morning skate before heading back home for the summer Tuesday: goaltender Jake Oettinger and forwards Ty Dellandrea, Riley Damiani, Rhett Gardner and Josh Melnick.
All five joined AHL affiliate Texas after their junior or college seasons ended but are now done for the year after Texas missed the AHL playoffs.Oettinger (Boston University), Gardner (North Dakota) and Melnick (Miami) finished their college careers and will return to the organization in the fall. Dellandrea (Flint) and Damiani (Kitchener) will play in the Ontario Hockey League next year if they are not in the NHL.
Oettinger and Dellandrea were first-round picks.
The Stars are expected to add a handful of players from Texas’ roster as black aces in the coming days. Black aces are called up after the AHL season primarily to practice and potentially serve as insurance should the NHL team need another lineup option.