Nov 27, 2013, 5:14 PM EDT
The 31-year-old rearguard last played on Nov. 5 in a 5-1 win over Calgary before being sidelined by an upper-body injury. That development was a tough one for the Minnesota native, as Ballard had only just returned from a seven-game absence (concussion) on Nov. 1.
Ballard has been somewhat effective for the Wild this year when healthy. He has four assists and a plus-6 rating in nine games, and logged a season-high 19:46 TOI in a 4-0 win over New Jersey on Nov. 3.
Problem is, he’s missed 16 of Minnesota’s 25 games this year and hasn’t been able to establish a consistent presence in the lineup.
In other Wild news, Jason Zucker has been reassigned to AHL Iowa, paving the way for Torrey Mitchell to get back into the lineup. Mitchell hasn’t played since Nov. 19 after suffering a hip injury in Montreal.
- TGIF: In which we salivate over potential playoff matchups 10
- Backstrom to receive silver medal, IOC says Sweden doctor ‘made a serious error’ 28
- Pens lose Neal to concussion 51
- Here are the top 10 and bottom 10 goalies in even-strength save percentage 21
- Weekend preview: Flyers-Pens rivalry renewed, Bruins look to stay hot 11
- Video: Stamkos scores first goal since returning to Lightning lineup 4
- Sedin backs Tortorella and staff: ‘We love playing for these coaches’ 26
- Here are three ‘major changes’ the NHL should consider 98
- Callahan: I wanted to stay in New York 40
- Playoff bubble watch — Wild edition 18
- Here are three ‘major changes’ the NHL should consider (98)
- Chiasson ‘shaken up’ by Peverley incident, won’t dress for Stars tonight (74)
- ‘It’s obvious Tortorella can’t come back next year,’ writes Vancouver reporter (62)
- Video: Dryden on why hockey should ‘give up the fighting, but keep the fight’ (57)
- Cooke to play 1,000th game tomorrow (56)