Winnipeg Jets winger Nikolaj Ehlers has been an enigma the past several days. The 22-year-old forward did not play in Game 3 of the Western Conference Final against the Vegas Golden Knights, and also has not skated for the past three days. Many questions surrounded Ehlers and his condition, and many speculated he was injured. It has been revealed, however, that Ehlers has been in fact ill and that he is available for Game 4.
The #NHLJets say Nikolaj Ehlers is sick, not injured. He didn't skate yesterday, but is available for tonight's game.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) May 18, 2018
Nikolaj Ehlers Sick, Not Injured; Available for Game 4
The Jets are currently down two games to one against the Golden Knights, with Game 4 being Friday night, tonight. Ehlers was the Jets third highest scorer this season, scoring 29 goals and tallying an additional 31 assists for 60 points during the regular season. This postseason, Ehlers as skated in 13 games, scoring zero goals, but notching seven helpers.
The Jets took down the Minnesota Wild in the opening round of the playoffs and dispatched of the Nashville Predators in round two. They currently are taking on the Golden Knights, with both teams making their first Conference finals appearance in franchise history.
Ehlers did not skate in the Jets optional skate this morning, marking his third consecutive day of not skating. The Jets said that Ehlers was available to play in Game 4, but there has been no other word of whether or not he will be suiting up to play. He has been labelled as a game-time decision.
The Jets are having the best season in franchise history, having gone 52-20-10 in the regular season. They finished second in the Central Division behind the Predators. They won their first ever franchise playoff series in round one against the Wild. The Jets are trying to avoid a third consecutive loss Friday night, and are optimistic about their chances: “The good news is it’s not a best-of-three series, it’s a best-of-seven series. We came into this series approaching it that way. We’re going to fight the distance. It’s a good opportunity for us to get a big road win tonight, hopefully, and go back into our building,” captain Blake Wheeler told the Winnipeg Free Press.