NHL News: Zach Werenski lost for season, Caps coach in COVID protocol, and more
Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski likely will miss the rest of regular season after sustaining a separated shoulder and torn labrum.
He left the team’s 5-2 win against the Philadelphia Flyers at the 17:01 mark of the first period on Thursday after crashing into the glass.
“It’s not good,” Blue Jackets coach Brad Larsen said in his postgame remarks. “It’s not going to be good at all.”
Werenski, 25, had a goal and an assist before departing the game. In 13 games this season, he has eight points (three goals, five assists).
The news came through the team’s roster update.
Zach Werenski lost for season
Since the Blue Jackets selected him with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, Werenski has 245 points (79 goals, 166 assists) in 416 NHL games.
He isn’t the only wounded member of the Blue Jackets. On Friday, they placed defenseman Nick Blankenburg and forwards Sean Kuraly and Jakub Voracek on injured reserve.
To fill the void, Columbus added defensemen Gavin Bayreuther, Marcus Bjork and David Jiricek to the roster on emergency recall from the Cleveland Monsters of the American Hockey League.
Blankenburg, 24, is on IR retroactive to Nov. 4. He sustained a broken ankle and high ankle sprain last week. In seven games this season, he has three points (two goals, one assist) with four penalty minutes.
Kuraly, 29, sustained an upper-body injury on Nov. 5 and was placed on IR retroactive to that day. He is considered day-to-day. Kuraly has appeared in 12 games this season with four points on two goals and two assists.
Voracek, 33, suffered an upper-body injury on Nov. 4, the first of two back-to-back games against the Colorado Avalanche. He is out indefinitely. In 11 games this season, Voracek has six points (one goal, five assists).
Columbus heads on the road to face the New York Islanders on Saturday.
Peter Laviolette in COVID protocol
Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette entered the NHL’s COVID protocol ahead of Friday’s game against the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning.
Per the Capitals, Laviolette will miss Friday’s game against the Lightning as well as Sunday’s return match at Tampa Bay.
Assistant coach Kevin McCarthy will assume head coaching responsibilities in Laviolette’s absence.
Laviolette, 57, is in his third season with Washington. He owns a 723-473-142 record with 25 ties in 1,363 games behind the bench with the New York Islanders, Carolina Hurricanes, Philadelphia Flyers, Nashville Predators and Capitals.
The Capitals enter Friday’s game having lost five of their last six (1-3-2).
Devils name Martin Brodeur EVP of Hockey Ops
The New Jersey Devils named Hall of Fame goalie Martin Brodeur their executive vice president of hockey operations on Thursday.
Brodeur, 50, won three Stanley Cups with the Devils over 21 years with the organization and has been working in business development with the club since 2018.
Brodeur inked a multiyear contract extension and will focus on personnel, player recruitment, scouting and the Devils’ goaltending development department. He’s been an adviser to the hockey ops department since 2020.
“Marty has been a tremendous resource to me with his experience, input, foresight and relationships throughout the hockey world,” Devils general manager Tom Fitzgerald said in a statement. “It makes sense to formalize and give clarity to his roles and responsibilities within the organization.”
Brodeur won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s top goaltender four times in his career, which ended in the 2014-15 season. Brodeur was selected No. 20 overall by the Devils in the 1990 draft.
Brodeur remains tops in NHL history in career wins (691) and shutouts (125), among other categories.
Brodeur played nearly all of his 1,266 career games with the Devils; he appeared in seven games with the St. Louis Blues in 2014-15.
–Field Level Media