Sami Vatanen Out Indefinitely For New Jersey Devils

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Sami Vatanen
NEWARK, NEW JERSEY - JANUARY 10: Sami Vatanen #45 of the New Jersey Devils skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Prudential Center on January 10, 2019 in Newark, New Jersey. The Maple Leafs defeated the Devils 4-2. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

New Jersey Devils have announced that defenseman Sami Vatanen has a concussion. Vatanen will be out indefinitely for the Devils. The injury occurred on Monday night when the Devils won against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Sami Vatanen Out With Concussion

Sami Vatanen was knocked out of the Devils game in Pittsburgh on Monday night. He required stitches above his eye as he suffered facial lacerations in contact with Derick Brassard. These problems most probably led to the concussion for him. Finnish defenseman has missed both practices since and has no timetable for his return. The Devils play their next game on Thursday night against the New York Rangers at Prudential Center.

Vatanen played in 46 games this year collecting four goals and 17 points in total. The Devils already need to adjust to many injuries. Forward Taylor Hall is still out and defenceman Ben Lovejoy remains on the injured reserve.

What This Means for the Future

Sami Vatanen will be missed by the Devils mainly on their power play. Vatanen, already with 17 points on the year, is the third most productive defenseman on the New Jersey roster. With 13 points behind the eight place in the Eastern Conference, the Devils are in a very deep hole. Making playoff doesn’t seem probable, but nothing can be ruled out. The Devils still have 33 games yet to play.

Head Coach John Hynes wants to see more from defensemen Egor Yakovlev or Mirco Mueller as the replacement for Vatanen. In their next game against the Rangers on Thursday night, Will Butcher will be accompanied by Mirco Mueller on the second pair. Third Devils defensive pair will count Yakovlev and Steven Santini. In addition to that, goaltender Keith Kinkaid will be in the net versus the Rangers.

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