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Golden Knights injury report: Updates on Marchessault, Cotter, Martinez, Eichel, Dorofeyev and more

The Golden Knights have recalled forward Sheldon Rempal from Henderson.

Colorado Avalanche v Vegas Golden Knights - Game Four Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The Vegas Golden Knights’ list of injured players is growing by the day, and the situation is starting to feel eerily similar to last season’s disastrous injury-plagued collapse.

The most recent injury was to Pavel Dorofeyev, who sustained an undisclosed injury Dec. 28 against the Ducks. Dorofeyev left the game in the third period and did not return. He has been ruled out for Saturday’s game against Nashville.

The Golden Knights announced Friday that the club has recalled forward Sheldon Rempal from the AHL Henderson Silver Knights. Rempal skated on the third line with Jake Leschyshyn and Jonas Rondbjerg in yesterday’s practice and is expected to play Saturday against the Predators in Dorofeyev’s stead.

Alec Martinez is another recent victim of the injury bug.

The veteran blueliner injured his foot blocking a shot Dec. 27 against the Kings; he left the game in the first period and did not return. He has not been ruled out for Saturday’s game against Nashville, which at least indicates his injury may not be long-term.

Fortunately for Vegas, several Golden Knights skaters are showing progress in their recovery.

At yesterday’s practice, both Jonathan Marchessault and Paul Cotter were on the ice wearing blue non-contact jerseys.

They are unlikely to play Saturday against Nashville, but Bruce Cassidy said it’s possible they could play Monday in Colorado but more likely that they will be ready for the Golden Knights’ home matchup against Pittsburgh on Thursday.

Thursday’s game against Pittsburgh is the first contest in a seven-game homestand stretching more than two weeks (Jan. 5 to Jan. 21).

Marchessault is out with a lower-body injury suffered Dec. 21 against Arizona. He was deemed day-to-day but has missed the last three games despite being with the team on its recent two-game road trip in California.

He has 14 goals and 27 points in 35 games and is tied for fourth on the team in scoring.

Cotter’s injury came back on Dec. 15 in Chicago after he took a massive hit from Blackhawks defenseman Jarred Tinordi. Cotter was down on the ice following the hit, went straight to the locker room and has missed the last six games.

Cotter had a memorable two-goal performance in Boston after being elevated to the top line in place of Jack Eichel. He played well in the games that followed despite not scoring and has four goals and six points in 22 games this year.

Eichel has missed the majority of December after sustaining a lower-body injury Dec. 3 against Detroit.

Eichel missed the next two games but returned Dec. 9 for Vegas’ 2-1 overtime win against Philadelphia in which he led all Vegas forwards in ice time (20:15). However, he was out of the lineup once again Dec. 11 against Boston and has not played since.

Eichel was leading the team in goals (13) and points (29) but has since fallen to third in overall scoring. However, Chandler Stephenson and Mark Stone, who are first and second with 36 and 32 points, respectively, have played in 11 more games than Eichel.

Stephenson recorded 14 points in seven straight games starting in Boston but has gone pointless in his last two, while Stone has seven goals and 11 points in his last nine games and is currently on a four-game point streak during which he has collected four goals and seven points.

Eichel was placed on injured reserve on Dec. 16 retroactive to his last game (Dec. 9); he was eligible to return Dec. 17 against the Islanders but remains on injured reserve (along with Marchessault and Cotter).

Eichel is skating, but there is no timetable for his return.

The Golden Knights also have been without defensemen Shea Theodore and Zach Whitecloud.

They were injured in back-to-back games, with Theodore going down Dec. 9 against Philadelphia and Whitecloud following suit Dec. 11 in Boston.

Theodore collided with Flyers defenseman Travis Sanheim in overtime, leaving him sprawled on the ice in obvious pain. He has missed nine games, and while he remains on the active roster, his injury is worse than originally thought. Cassidy labeled him week-to-week but then said it would be a more long-term absence.

Whitecloud was injured in Vegas’ next game, a 3-1 loss to Boston on Dec. 11.

His injury came in the second period when his right leg bent awkwardly under Bruins winger Taylor Hall, who fell on Whitecloud’s skate in the crease. Whitecloud needed assistance getting to the bench and did not put any weight on the leg as he made his way down the tunnel.

Whitecloud was placed on long-term injured reserve the following day, ruling him out for at least 10 games (through Jan. 2 against Colorado). Though he’ll be eligible to return Jan. 5 against Pittsburgh, he is considered month-to-month. Cassidy does not believe it is a season-threatening injury, however.

Brett Howden remains on long-term injured reserve after getting hurt in late November.

Needless to say, the Golden Knights are dropping like flies.

Vegas remains in first place in the Pacific Division with 50 points but leads by just two over Los Angeles, though Vegas has a game in hand. However, the Golden Knights have gone 5-5-1 in their last 11 games and are coming off back-to-back road losses for the first time this season.

Vegas is not exactly firing on all cylinders, while the Kings (48 points) have won six of their last seven and the Oilers (42 points with a game in hand) have won three of four and are coming off a 7-2 thrashing of the Kraken.

Marchessault, Cotter and Martinez appear to be nearing a return, and Eichel is skating, but the Golden Knights need to stop the bleeding. They do not want and cannot afford a repeat of last year’s debacle.