The Winnipeg Jets were dealt bad news on trade deadline day, learning that first-year center Mark Scheifele will miss at least six weeks with a MCL injury.
Scheifele, who was considered a Calder Trophy candidate as Rookie of the Year, has scored 13 goals and 34 points in all of the Jets’ 63 games this season. At time of inury, he was centering Chris Thorburn and Blake Wheeler on the Jets’ second line.
Scheifele’s injury occured when Calvin de Haan hit him early into the second period of the Jets’ loss to the New York Islanders on Tuesday night. Scheifele went off the ice slowly, and did not return to the game. de Haan received a minor penalty for Tripping. You can view a GIF of the collision here, courtesy of SB Nation.
The hit caused minor controvrsesy, with Jets fans calling for supplemental discipline to be handed out by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. Jets teammate and fellow rookie gives his account of the hit:
I think Mark just kind of tried to jump out of the way a little bit and try to avoid the hit… haven’t looked closely at it.”
Trouba said he was on the ice while the hit occured, but has not seen a replay since then.
Scheifele’s injury leaves a hole at center in the Jets’ lineup, with fellow pivot James Wright out indefinitely with an ankle sprain. In the meantime, he Jets will likely call up Eric O’Dell or John Albert from their AHL affiliate, the St. John’s Ice Caps. It is unlikely that Winnipeg will trade for help.
Even if Scheifele returned five weeks from Wednesday, he would only be available to play in the Jets’ two final games of the regular season. With GM Kevin Chevaldayoff staying quiet on deadline day, it looks like the Winnipeg Jets will have to make a run at the playoffs with the players they have left.
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