This is not the type of news the Dallas Stars need in the early part of the season.
Starting goaltender Kari Lehtonen had to leave Friday's game in Winnipeg with a lower body injury and did not return. He was replaced in net by Dan Ellis, which is a pretty decent drop in production based on their recent performances in the NHL.
Dallas ended up winning the game 4-1 thanks in large part to a four-point effort from Tyler Seguin.
The news that Lehtonen suffered a lower body injury is somewhat surprising since, just before he left the game, he was hit in the mask area by a shot from Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba. The Stars, however, said that was unrelated to the injury.
When Lehtonen was still with the Atlanta Thrashers the early part of his career was decimated by injuries, but when he's been healthy he's been an average to slightly above average starting goaltender, and that's been especially true since he arrive in Dallas back in 2010.
In 36 games last season Lehtonen posted a .916 save percentage to go with a 15-14-3 record.
The team signed him a five-year, $29.5 million contract extension in 2012.