NEW YORK — The Golden Knights will be without center Cody Eakin for an extended period of time.
Eakin, who left Friday’s 2-1 shootout victory over Arizona, is listed as week to week with an upper-body injury, coach Gerard Gallant said Sunday.
Eakin absorbed an illegal hit to the head from Arizona’s Brad Richardson during the third period and did not return for the final 7:22.
Richardson was assessed a two-minute minor penalty on the play but did not receive any supplemental discipline from the league, as Eakin’s head was not the main point of contact.
With Eakin sidelined, rookie Cody Glass will slide into his natural position and center the third line when the Knights face the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.
Glass skated with wingers Alex Tuch and William Carrier during practice Sunday at Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
“It’s going to make him feel a little more comfortable,” Gallant said of Glass. “He was fine on the wing. When injuries happen, hopefully Cody can take advantage of that and play some center and play real good.”
Nicolas Roy was recalled Saturday from the American Hockey League on an emergency basis and will be in the lineup Monday. Roy centered the fourth line between Tomas Nosek and Ryan Reaves during practice.
“He’s going to get an opportunity again, and he played real well when he was up here last time,” Gallant said of Roy.
Fleury close to returning
Gallant said the Knights “fully expect” goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury to join the team on their three-game road trip, but added he’s not sure when.
Fleury is on a personal leave after his father passed away last week.
The Knights, who play a back-to-back against the Rangers and Devils starting Monday, recalled goaltender Garret Sparks on an emergency basis Sunday.
’Tis the season
December has been the Knights’ best month during their brief existence, as they’ve recorded points in 24 of their 28 games.
The Knights went 11-1-1 in December of their inaugural season and won seven straight games at one point while setting a franchise record for most victories in a month.
Last season, the Knights found their stride in December and finished the month on a six-game points streak to finish with a 9-3-3 mark.
The Rangers enter Monday’s game against the Knights on a season-long, five-game point streak (4-0-1) and have points in six straight at home (5-0-1).
New York’s defensemen have accounted for 23 goals and 74 points, which leads the NHL. Forward Artemi Panarin set a franchise record for points in November with 23 (seven goals, 16 assists).