Winnipeg Jets Josh Morrissey Out Until Early April

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OTTAWA, ON - FEBRUARY 09: Winnipeg Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey (44) waits for a face-off during second period National Hockey League action between the Winnipeg Jets and Ottawa Senators on February 9, 2019, at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, ON, Canada. (Photo by Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Josh Morrissey of the Winnipeg Jets will be out for all of March and is expected to return sometime in early April, the team announced Tuesday.

Winnipeg Jets Josh Morrissey Injured

The Jets defenceman left the ice after taking a hard hit Sunday night when the team faced off against the Arizona Coyotes. Morrissey’s injury occurred during the third period. After absorbing a hit along the boards from Coyotes forward Vinnie Hinostroza, Morrissey exited the game holding his left arm. He will be out of the Jets lineup until early April due to an upper-body injury.

Currently, Morrissey owns six goals and 25 assists for 31 points in 59 games. Over his four-year NHL career with the Jets, he’s tallied 19 goals and 58 assists for 77 points across 223 games.

What this means for the future

The Jets defensive core is damaged. With both Dustin Byfuglien and Joseph Morrow sidelined with injuries, the loss of Morrissey tests the team’s blueline depth. The Jets made some moves ahead of the recently expired trade deadline to alleviate some of that pressure.

With injuries chipping away at their defense, the club needed to do something to bolster their bench. Winnipeg added two defencemen to their roster on deadline day. The team acquired Nathan Beaulieu from the Buffalo Sabres and Bogdan Kiselevich from the Florida Panthers.

The loss of Morrissey leaves a big hole in the Jets lineup. He’s one half of the teams top shut-down pairing and can lend a hand offensively as well. Beaulieu was paired with Jacob Trouba during the teams morning skate. He is expected to fill in during Morrissey’s absence as the Jets meet the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday.

The Jets also added Kevin Hayes from the New York Rangers ahead of the trade deadline. Head coach Paul Maurice stated that the team will utilize Hayes on the power play in Morrissey’s vacant spot.

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