Arizona’s blueline took a major blow on Monday.
According to Craig Morgan of The Athletic, Niklas Hjalmarsson will be out of the lineup for approximately three months after cracking his fibula in the first period of Saturday’s overtime loss to the Colorado Avalanche. The injury was reportedly suffered as a result of this blocked shot off the stick of Erik Johnson.
Hjalmarsson left the Pepsi Center that night on crutches, per Morgan.
The 32-year-old Swede has been a defensive pillar for the Coyotes since being acquired in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks in June 2017. His 187 blocks in 82 regular season games last year were a career-high and good for second overall in the NHL. In fact, he’s posted at least 118 blocks in each of his last six seasons.
After failing to find the back of the net in all of the 2018-19 campaign, the three-time Stanley Cup champion found the back of the net in Thursday’s 4-1 win over the Vegas Golden Knights.
Despite multiple injuries throughout their lineup, the Coyotes are off to a 1-2-1 start this season.
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