The Pittsburgh Penguins have suffered another injury. Head coach Mike Sullivan updated the media today and explained that though Nick Bjugstad was still being evaluated, he expects the big forward to be out “longer-term.” Bjugstad exited the game on Friday against the New Jersey Devils when he fell awkwardly into the boards.
Sullivan did announce that Patric Hornqvist is getting closer and that Kris Letang has resumed skating on his own, but isn’t ready for practice yet. The team is also still without Sidney Crosby as he recovers from his sports hernia surgery.
Bjugstad, 27, was already injured earlier this year and missed several games, limiting his impact for the team. In ten contests—two of which have been cut short by injury—he has just a single goal and zero assists. That’s a far cry from the nine goals and 14 points he registered in just 32 games for them following a trade from the Florida Panthers last season, and even further from the 24-goal campaign he put up as a 22-year old in 2014-15.
Selected 19th overall in 2010, Bjugstad has been something of a disappointment so far in his NHL career, dealing with injuries almost every season and not finding much consistency when he was on the ice. His absence will be missed however, given the other health concerns the team has at forward.