.@SvenBaertschi has a fractured jaw and will miss 4-to-6 weeks. No surgery required, said Coach Green.
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) December 11, 2017
When it rains, it pours on the injury front.
Travis Green announced today that Sven Baertschi would be out 4-6 weeks with a fractured jaw, after getting hit in the face by a puck in Saturday’s game against Calgary.
Baertschi gets hit by the puck after it bounces off the glass, took him out of the game pic.twitter.com/v2ZxLL4Zkn
— Wyatt Arndt (@TheStanchion) December 10, 2017
This is, needless to say, terrible news. The Canucks are already missing Bo Horvat for up to six weeks, meaning that they’ll be without two thirds of their top line until some point in January. Very few teams would be able to withstand such a blow, and the Canucks didn’t exactly have league-beating depth to begin with.
Baertschi sits third on the team in both goals (8) and points (18, tied with Thomas Vanek) in 30 games played, and is fourth among regulars in 5-on-5 points per hour, accumulating his point totals in just 15:57 average minutes of ice time. Like Horvat, Baertschi has been among the team leaders at drawing penalties, with seven drawn at evens so far. He has, however, taken five minors himself, but still remains on the positive side of the ledger in that regard.
Things are about to get a lot trickier for Travis Green and his staff. Brandon Sutter should be returning in a week or so, but he’ll hardly put a dent in the loss of the offence that the Canucks are suffering right now. This seems like it will be an extended opportunity for Goldobin t show what he can do at the NHL level, but it could also open a door for Reid Boucher. The diminutive sniper is tied for second in the AHL in goals with 13, and has been an integral component in Utica’s top-ten power play.
The Canucks are at a bit of a crossroads in their season, and missing two of their best offensive players for long stretches could send them into a tailspin if they don’t get a few heroic performances and a fair amount of luck.