Minnesota Wild backup Josh Harding was carried off the ice during his first pre-season appearance after a collision with Blues forward Brad Boyes. Reports indicated that Harding re-injured his hip after undergoing surgery for his torn right hip labrum during the off-season.
While not the most fantasy relevant netminder in the League, the 26-year-old Harding probably could have pushed his counterpart Niklas Backstrom back to a higher level or even challenged for the position. His statistics last year seemed somewhat disappointing as his GAA jumped a whopping .84 of a goal and SV% dropped 24 points but he has potential.
However, the Wild’s new system no longer pad netminding statistics.
Look for Anton Khudobin or Matt Hackett to fill in for Harding should this injury continue to look serious. Neither would figure to start more than Backstrom unless he completely collapsed.
UPDATE: Harding has been diagnosed with a torn ACL and MCL and is likely to miss the entire 2010-11 season.
View the grim injury on YouTube.