The Winnipeg Jets have made several transactions today, not the least of which was moving Patrik Laine to injured reserve. Laine has played in just one game so far this season and will not play tomorrow against the Ottawa Senators. Nate Thompson joins Laine on injured reserve, while Dylan DeMelo has been activated and David Gustafsson has been brought up from the minors to the taxi squad.
While Laine won’t play, it is good news to see DeMelo activated after missing the first four games. The 27-year-old defenseman will be a welcome addition for the Jets who have shuffled their defense around on a daily basis this season, especially after he fit in so well down the stretch in 2020. DeMelo was acquired at the deadline from the Ottawa Senators and logged more than 21 minutes a night in ten regular season games with the Jets, before seeing big minutes again in the postseason bubble.
Murat Ates of The Athletic isn’t sure whether it will be Logan Stanley or Ville Heinola coming out for DeMelo, but does note that the later is still a slide candidate should he play fewer than seven games this season. Heinola has played just one so far, meaning they could potentially send him to the minors and allow his entry-level contract to extend another year. Stanley, who is already 22, will become a restricted free agent in the summer no matter how many games he plays this season.
After a tumultuous offseason that saw Laine’s agent suggest a trade would be best for his client, the 22-year-old forward can’t seem to get back into the lineup thanks to his somewhat mysterious injury. Head coach Paul Maurice told Ken Wiebe of Sportsnet that Laine had more testing done today and that “nothing new came up on it.” In that one game Laine has played, he registered two goals and one assist.