Max Pacioretty is out indefinitely for the Vegas Golden Knights after he had wrist surgery Thursday.
The forward has scored 21 points (12 goals, nine assists) in 16 games. He had missed 17 games with a lower-body injury sustained Oct. 14.
Pacioretty played 17:24 in a 6-3 win at the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday, just below his season average of 17:56.
The Golden Knights (21-12-0) are 6-1-0 in their past seven games and are one point ahead of the Anaheim Ducks for first place in the Pacific Division. Vegas opens a six-game homestand against Anaheim on Friday (3 p.m. ET; SN1, ATTSN-RM, BSSC, BSSD, ESPN+, NHL LIVE).
The Golden Knights are expected to have defenseman Alex Pietrangelo in the lineup for that game. He was removed from NHL COVID-19 protocol and practiced Thursday after missing two games.
“When you think of Alex’s leadership on and off the ice, he plays big minutes, he plays in every situation,” assistant Steve Spott said. “He really is one of our true leaders. It’s great to have him back.”
Pietrangelo has scored 22 points (five goals, 17 assists) in 31 games, playing in every game this season prior to entering protocol Dec 21. His 25:43 average ice time per game leads the Golden Knights and is three minutes more than the next skater (defenseman Shea Theodore, 22:40).
Forward Evgenii Dadonov also returned to practice after entering protocol at the same time as Pietrangelo and is expected to return to the lineup Friday.
Dadonov took line rushes at first-line right wing in place of captain Mark Stone, who is day to day with an undisclosed injury.
“You’re bringing back two quality players and two veterans,” Spott said. “Both real good additions for us tomorrow against a good team.”