- Tristan H. Cockcroft, Fantasy
Maybe it seems like we say this every season, but injuries seem to be striking a fair share of top-tier fantasy players this year. Here's the skinny on the health of four superstars who have hit the shelf in recent weeks, and who has benefited by stepping in for them:
Simon Gagne, F, Flyers: The NHL's leading goal scorer with 23, Gagne was diagnosed with a groin tear following an MRI exam last Friday. He'll be sidelined for two weeks, leaving the team without its leading scorer, its leading defensive scorer (Joni Pitkanen, out at least a month due to abdominal surgery) and its starting goalie (Robert Esche, who should return from a groin strain on Wednesday). Gagne should be fine long-term, but don't count on anything from him until after the new year. For now, his absence thrusts rookie Jeff Carter into a more prominent role on the Philadelphia first line. He's getting to skate alongside superstar playmaker Peter Forsberg, and for the same reason, Mike Knuble could also get a few more scoring chances for the next couple weeks.