Minnesota Wild: Charlie Coyle Injury Opens Door For Jason Zucker

Minnesota Wild Zucker

Brace Hemmelgarn – USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Wild have suffered their first big setback of the 2013-14 season, as they learned that forward Charlie Coyle will be out for up to a month with a knee injury. While losing one of their young players isn’t great news, the Wild had the luxury of being able to immediately call up Jason Zucker, another one of their future stars. Coyle was without a point in two games this season, while Zucker has yet to play in a game. The Wild have lost both games they have played this season, but have taken a point from each. Youth was expected to be a big part of their storyline this season, and they now have a chance to show off another of the prospects they have in a very deep prospects pool.

Zucker played in 20 games for the Wild last season, scoring four goals. He also scored an overtime goal in the playoffs that gave the Wild their only win in a first round series against the Chicago Blackhawks. While with the Houston Aeros of the AHL during the 2012-13 season, Zucker scored 24 goals and had 50 points in 55 games. Coyle had been playing with Dany Heatley and Nino Niederreiter on the second line, and his injury has led to a bit of shuffling. Zucker will play on the opposite wing of Heatley, but with Mikael Granlund centering the line. Niederreiter, for the moment, has been dropped down to the third line. The Wild travel to face the Nashville Predators on Tuesday before heading home to host the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday.

Jonathan Katje is an NHL featured columnist for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter or add him to your circles on Google Plus.

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