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Matt Cullen Injury: Wild Forward Could Miss Rest Of Season With Injured Hand

Minnesota Wild center Matt Cullen could miss the rest of the season with a hand injury suffered against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

Mar 13, 2012; St. Paul, MN, USA; Minnesota Wild forward Matt Cullen (7) carries the puck during the third period against the Dallas Stars at the Xcel Energy Center. The Stars defeated the Wild 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE
Mar 13, 2012; St. Paul, MN, USA; Minnesota Wild forward Matt Cullen (7) carries the puck during the third period against the Dallas Stars at the Xcel Energy Center. The Stars defeated the Wild 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE

As the Minnesota Wild desperately try to claw toward one of the final playoff spots available, the last thing they need is more injuries piling onto the group that they already have. Unfortunately you can add another tick mark to the wall as center Matt Cullen looks poised to miss the rest of the year after breaking his wrist during a loss against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

"I was just trying to knock the puck down, trying to go the other way," Cullen said. "You know, down a goal, you're trying to get a break here or there. It's just a fluky thing. You block a lot of shots through the course of the season, and that one wasn't particularly hard. It just happened to find the right spot, and it breaks the bone."

During the third period of that game, Christian Ehrhoff smacked a wrister that hit Cullen in the hand, breaking his finger. Cullen has scored 14 goals and 21 assists so far this season for Minnesota, being pushed up to the first and second lines instead of his usual third line position as injuries have ransacked the team all season long. The Sabres loss -- compounded by another loss days later to the Washington Capitals -- plus yet another injury blow to the Wild is just another chink in the playoff hunting armor.

The Wild have seven games remaining in the season, barring a miracle that will extend their year into the postseason.

For more on the Minnesota Wild, check out Hockey Wilderness.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.